Why do you disagree with libertarianism?
I believe they are all crazy
3.6% (9)
3.6% (9)
I believe their economic ideas are wrong
35.5% (89)
35.5% (89)
I believe their social ideas are wrong
6.8% (17)
6.8% (17)
I believe their economic and social ideas are wrong
25.5% (64)
25.5% (64)
I am a libertarian
17.5% (44)
17.5% (44)
Other
10.4% (26)
10.4% (26)
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Poll: Why do you disagree with libertarianism?

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AgedGrunt:

There is an ultimate force that influences people: money, and it transcends capitalism. Perhaps consider that it's not the capitalist system, but the spirit residing in many people no matter where they are.

Consolidating more into government is just going to make it the better proposition -- for the elite few that make it.

Money isn't an ultimate force. Now as your claim isn't specific about what makes it "the ultimate" I can't get into specifics either until you flarify.

However, that said, there are some gaping holes.

For one, this ignores that throughout all of human history the 'ultimateness' of money has been shown to be false. People have rejected money and lived lives as ascetics. People give money to charity to help others. Some entire nations and societies have run on socio-economic principles which reject the power of money. Ultimate? No, even a cursory glance at the world shows that time and time again people are rejecting the power of money.

As for transcending Capitalism, not really. In Non-capitalist systems where money exists it obviously still exerts some power, but is markedly different under modern day Capitalism than it is under ancient fuedalism. It's inherently tied to the systems of the time.

Your claim seems to just be a massive fetishism of commodities with a focus on the money-form in particular.

More money to government doesn't necessitate anything, either good or bad. Depending on the system, it could be used fantastically beneficially or for no good use.

Agema:
Given the salaries for Western politicians and skills required to achieve high office, I suspect most of those people would have been better off trading on their talents to high positions in private sector employ, which is the best way to earn megabucks.

I wouldn't dream for a minute of claiming government does not have considerable problems of its own that need resolution.

I'd say politicians are like businessmen: top salesmen of lies, damned lies and half-truths.

My other point wasn't disputing whether problems exist in government, it's the premeditation business seems to be accused of by some people, that the private sector knows it will cause harm but a need to profit demands it anyway, whereas a tone seems to exist with some that government isn't about harming but, well, shit happens. If that doesn't describe you then nevermind.

Also, as a teacher, I would think that a big challenge in your job is taking the very complex and making it very simple, but am surprised you do so by omission. I prefer to think of an assistant professor using the space of two chalkboards and reading from his notes to explain physics to PhD students and a senior professor that can give a demonstration that shows the same principle which a child can understand. That is to say you don't need to complicate a matter; communicate it.

We shouldn't make the world needlessly complicated and in my opinion big government embodies that philosophy to the Nth degree. It's likely that's where we end up disagreeing.

Overhead:
Money isn't an ultimate force. Now as your claim isn't specific about what makes it "the ultimate" I can't get into specifics either until you flarify.

However, that said, there are some gaping holes.

You may have taken ultimate to mean absolute and/or universal. I believe it's the ultimate force in the sense that it's what runs economies. If you don't have a medium to facilitate trade you are back to commodities like gold or bartering. Why don't we just substitute money for wealth. No matter the system or environment, there will be people who want to enrich/empower themselves.

AgedGrunt:
You may have taken ultimate to mean absolute and/or universal. I believe it's the ultimate force in the sense that it's what runs economies. If you don't have a medium to facilitate trade you are back to commodities like gold or bartering. Why don't we just substitute money for wealth. No matter the system or environment, there will be people who want to enrich/empower themselves.

That's just commodity fetishism. Exchange value is just the outward form of commodities in capitalism, which is commonly embodied in the money form. The physical existence of commodities is what runs economies and that isn't enabled by scraps of paper, it's enabled by physical labour. Economies can and have been run without money. They have not been run without commodities themselves.

Also barter was never actually a thing which economies were based off. Adam Smith's examples of of old medieval or tribal villages where people didn't have money and ant started to specialise in one type of good like making arrows and then had to barter their arrows for everything else they wanted simply doesn't exist. Some worked on credit system, other's produced products for communal use but the archetypal barter economy you find mentioned at the start of economic textbooks has never been found.

farson135:
Duh. Your main problem is the fact that you cannot understand when something is opinion and when it is fact.

^Opinion.

Welp, I'm 1 for 1.

Two simple questions that are irrelevant.

You've said that he we specifically talking about a very very strange business that only sold to it's employees, not talking about the employees at a standard type of business which has plenty of outside customers.

So:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Tell me something, your questions are irrelevant but also you insult and degrade me over and over again (even after I prove you wrong like in the Roman Plantation case) and somehow you expect me to play your game? You are not an honest debater and you have a very petty debating style. If you have nothing of value to say then stop cluttering my inbox.

I'm sorry you feel that way, but at the moment it's you who's insulting and degrading yourself.

The reason I say this is because you're essentially debating yourself. You're not debating what Seanchaidh wrote, you're debating what YOU imagine he wrote even though he specifically told you that what you imagined he's said is wrong. Likewise in your last posts you made claims about what I'd said that were completely different from the point I was trying to get across, which I've also outright told you.

Deal with people honestly, take what they say at face value and you might find things are a lot simpler and nicer.

And talking of that, you could start by answering my questions:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Throwing out a bunch of numbers means nothing. Prove your point/

Throwing out bunches of numbers proves lots of things. 2 + 2 = 4 for instance.

Besides, you've been unable to take even the most basic claim at face value. At this stage why would I that if I went through your posts and had to make a few hundred calls on whether or not you're avoiding a particular point, you wouldn't simply disregard them out of hand because you have a contrary opinion? You've already said you think your opinions are facts, so why would this change your mind?

Of course if you want to change my mind, you could honestly answer my two.

You do not need to read my mind you only need to read my posts.

Then list the questions I haven't replied to. Not the ones where you don't happen to like the answer, but the ones you're still waiting for an answer on and I'll give them to you.

The exception to this is the ones we're waiting of for you to answer the below:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees.

Fixed it for you.

See, this is you unable to face an argument so you have to change it rather than deal with it honestly.

You attack me as dishonest and then you keep changing Sean's arguments to fit your bias. Show me where he describes ANY other outside buyers. He doesn't. The model is limited to internal buyers. So let us change it back to how it should be-

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees.

The model specifically involves a company with outside buyers. There is no getting around this and that's why you're afraid to answer this question.

Try reading that and tell me how they are different. Fail.

You keep trying to weasel your way out of this point but it still exists.

I don't even get what I'm trying to weasel out of or what's meant to be wrong here. You're going to have to explain what your reading of this is, because once again you seem to be imagining points that aren't there. Maybe that because employees are mentioned that means customers don't exist? That's not the case being made. There, see, I clarified it for you and now you have no excuse for misunderstanding.

Now while you're at it:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Skeleon:
It's naive in my view. It's the right-wing verison of Communism, pretty much, in that it doesn't actually work without causing massive amounts of suffering and injustice. And at that point - while such a system could be stable for a while - I don't consider it to be "working" anymore. There are bits and pieces of it that I agree with (usually on social issues and civil liberties), but economically it leads to a widening of the gap between rich and poor, a lack of equality of opportunity and the solidification of classes. People don't actually succeed based on their merit in that kind of system but based on their connections, their parents' standing and access to education and business opportunities. Individuals breaking out of their class through a lucky shot or a new invention are incredibly rare compared to the many whose hard work never pays off. I'm a firm believer in the social contract and my country's success has been due to measures regarding public insurance, workers on corporate boards, strong unions, consumer protections and safety standards etc.. I don't want that dismantled and our chances for success hampered by unworkable ideologies, regardless whether they come from the far right or the far left.

I will just quote this as it says what I would say just more eloquently, I like some of the ideas behind Libertarianism but they are not practical. Human nature is what it is and I do not see it changing much in the near future, business have proven in the past time and time again that cannot be trusted. They will pollute the environment, mistreat the workers, create oligarchies, conduct shady financial practices and generally be absolute shits given half a chance. For every decent business that puts the consumer and employee on par with its interests and bottom line there will be ten that don't. Same when it comes to people 9 out of 10 of people in a society may be responsible, they may be able to own guns, drink and take drugs and never cause a problem but the 20% that do can make life a living hell for everyone else.

Plus I have some biases, I think its morally repugnant that water, basic food, basic shelter and medical care are profit driven enterprises that don't just give a person the sweat of their brow but funnel billions into the pockets of a select few. Finally we have the means to ensure more people in the world than ever before have clean water to drink, food to eat with a roof over their heads and unprecedented levels of medical knowledge to treat sick people.

Yet that ability is ignored and serves greed and power instead.

In theory not regulating businesses could work.

In practice it has been shown time and time again that there will always be evil corporations that will take any chance to screw over their employees, their customers, the environment, ANYTHING just to make more money.

Hell I read that when clocks were new and people were just starting to get paid by the hour companies would mess with the clocks so that they could trick their employees into working unpaid overtime. It's what led to clock towers being erected.

Overhead:
That's just commodity fetishism. Exchange value is just the outward form of commodities in capitalism, which is commonly embodied in the money form. The physical existence of commodities is what runs economies and that isn't enabled by scraps of paper, it's enabled by physical labour. Economies can and have been run without money. They have not been run without commodities themselves.

Also barter was never actually a thing which economies were based off. Adam Smith's examples of of old medieval or tribal villages where people didn't have money and ant started to specialise in one type of good like making arrows and then had to barter their arrows for everything else they wanted simply doesn't exist. Some worked on credit system, other's produced products for communal use but the archetypal barter economy you find mentioned at the start of economic textbooks has never been found.

That's irrelevant to the argument. Can we address the original point I was trying to make?

Money/wealth and power are driving forces that can cause harm (it was previously asserted that capitalism results in social harm). However, given that the above is not exclusive to that system, harm can happen in any economic and political system, and at a fundamental level. These forces corrupt people.

If we're going to fault capitalism for being driven by profit, then we can't simultaneously defend government as beneficial on the simple basis that it lacks this distinct "flaw". That's plainly illogical.

So far we have had a good knack for creating systems that would work flawlessly until human nature and greed comes along and breaks it all.

What we really need is a method to direct greed towards actions that are beneficial for others.

Some present-day capitalist businesses can do this by being mutually beneficial, but its not a strict 100% good situation. Living standards have certainly improved in Western nations that have moved through capitalism, and is increasing in nations newly adopting capitalism in the developing world.

Libertarian systems would allow unended greed so the mutually beneficial capitalist businesses can be more beneficial, but there would be nothing to encourage them to be mutually beneficial.

Communist systems don't fully allow people to use their greed so mutually beneficial greed-based entities wouldn't exist, but at the same time there would be no harmful greed-based entities.

If there was a method to both eliminate harmful greed and promote beneficial greed at the same time, all the worlds problems would be solved. Unfortunately, nobody has found a method to do this yet.

Overhead:
You've said that he we specifically talking about a very very strange business that only sold to it's employees, not talking about the employees at a standard type of business which has plenty of outside customers.

Which he was. That is why he cut out any outside buyers. Can you show me where he mentions outside buyers in his initial model? So you are wrong.

I'm sorry you feel that way, but at the moment it's you who's insulting and degrading yourself.

Right. You take no responsibility for your actions and yet you think that I should feel bad. Go ahead, continue to show how irresponsible you are.

You're not debating what Seanchaidh wrote

In your opinion but what I say is backed up by what he wrote.

Likewise in your last posts you made claims about what I'd said that were completely different from the point I was trying to get across

Prove it.

Deal with people honestly, take what they say at face value and you might find things are a lot simpler and nicer.

You know, I was about to say the same thing to you.

And talking of that, you could start by answering my questions

You know, repetition does not make something any more relevant. Your questions are still irrelevant. Sorry. That is how it is.

Of course if you want to change my mind, you could honestly answer my two.

Problem, you do not want to be convinced. You insult and degrade me without evidence. You insult me for saying the same goddamn thing you said to me. I do not care to play your games. Try acting honestly for once and maybe people will respond to you.

Then list the questions I haven't replied to. Not the ones where you don't happen to like the answer, but the ones you're still waiting for an answer on and I'll give them to you.

How about this- Show me where he describes ANY other outside buyers.

Of course you will not answer this question. You will whine and you will insult me but you will never answer it.

The model specifically involves a company with outside buyers. There is no getting around this and that's why you're afraid to answer this question.

Actually it is easy to get around. He never mentioned Fords other buyers he only mentioned one single marketing effort by Ford. By your logic, if we talk about the US efforts during WW2 as being against Fascism we are by necessity talking about the Japanese Internment Camps as being anti-fascist. You do not get to add in whatever random bits of information you want simply because you got caught. Admit it, he did not talk about outside buyers, he only talked about internal buyers in his model. Do not give me that imply bullshit. Either show me where he said it or admit that you are wrong.

Of course, you will not admit it. You will just continue to whine and degrade yourself. But we all know the truth.

AgedGrunt:
That's irrelevant to the argument. Can we address the original point I was trying to make?

Money/wealth and power are driving forces that can cause harm (it was previously asserted that capitalism results in social harm). However, given that the above is not exclusive to that system, harm can happen in any economic and political system, and at a fundamental level. These forces corrupt people.

If we're going to fault capitalism for being driven by profit, then we can't simultaneously defend government as beneficial on the simple basis that it lacks this distinct "flaw". That's plainly illogical.

Harm can happen in any political and economic system, completely right. It's about comparative levels of harm. Capitalism is better than feudalism is better than slave societies and so on.

Now we're all clear on the pursuit of wealth causing harm. Democratic government in and of itself does not use the pursuit of wealth as a driving force and safeguards are erected to limit the amount off damage operating in a capitalist system can do where capitalism and democratic government will often intertwine.

Government isn't necessarily beneficial, but at least in that regard it is superior to Capitalism. Perhaps there are other things which make government worse, other factors which have nothing to do with the profit motive that you will have to point out, but the different way wealth is treated by capitalist businesses and democratic governments clearly shows governments as being less harmful.

At the moment government fulfills many important social functions. By removing government to allow business to take them over, based on the profit motive at least we would be opening the door for a lot of harm as social benefit is trampled in the rush for profit.

farson135:
Which he was. That is why he cut out any outside buyers. Can you show me where he mentions outside buyers in his initial model? So you are wrong.

Sure I can show you. Answer these two questions and you'll see the answer:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Right. You take no responsibility for your actions and yet you think that I should feel bad. Go ahead, continue to show how irresponsible you are.

Why don't you show me the way by responsibly answering these questions:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

In your opinion but what I say is backed up by what he wrote.

Really. You're analysing what he wrote? Then answer these questions:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Prove it.

Well you could show me your ability to answer the questions being asked by answering the question now;

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

You know, I was about to say the same thing to you.

So you don't think you have a problem with answering questions honestly.

Then give me your honest answers to these:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

You know, repetition does not make something any more relevant. Your questions are still irrelevant. Sorry. That is how it is.

Really? I've found pretty much every response of yours irrelevent yet have answered them anyway in good faith. Show me the same courtesy:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Problem, you do not want to be convinced. You insult and degrade me without evidence. You insult me for saying the same goddamn thing you said to me. I do not care to play your games. Try acting honestly for once and maybe people will respond to you.

Okay, I'll ask you an honest question;

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

How about this- Show me where he describes ANY other outside buyers.

Of course you will not answer this question. You will whine and you will insult me but you will never answer it.

What was the specific company used in his example and did that company historically and famously have lots of outside buyers? Yes.

or to put it another way:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Actually it is easy to get around. He never mentioned Fords other buyers he only mentioned one single marketing effort by Ford. By your logic, if we talk about the US efforts during WW2 as being against Fascism we are by necessity talking about the Japanese Internment Camps as being anti-fascist. You do not get to add in whatever random bits of information you want simply because you got caught. Admit it, he did not talk about outside buyers, he only talked about internal buyers in his model. Do not give me that imply bullshit. Either show me where he said it or admit that you are wrong.

He told you to take the Ford company as an example. Did it or did it not have masses of outside employees? Of course it did, so why did you specifically disregard what he told you to do?

or to put it another way:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Of course, you will not admit it. You will just continue to whine and degrade yourself. But we all know the truth.

Well show me the truth to these two questions:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Overhead:
Sure I can show you.

I am waiting.

Why don't you show me the way by responsibly answering these questions

Sure, you are completely wrong in every way shape and form and you prove that by your inability to prove your point. That the answer you are looking for?

Really. You're analysing what he wrote? Then answer these questions

No need, your questions are irrelevant.

Well you could show me your ability to answer the questions being asked by answering the question now;

So you need me to prove your point for you. Rather pathetic don't you think? Then again, you prove me right with every post.

So you don't think you have a problem with answering questions honestly.

Nope. I just have a problem with people who play these kinds of games. At this point you are just being obstinate and taking up valuable space.

Really? I've found pretty much every response of yours irrelevent yet have answered them anyway in good faith.

In your opinion but your opinion does not equal fact.

What was the specific company used in his example and did that company historically and famously have lots of outside buyers? Yes.

Actually the company he used as his model never existed. That is why it is a model. He used a singular example from one real company but his model is fake.

He told you to take the Ford company as an example.

He took an element from the Ford Company as an example.

Did it or did it not have masses of outside employees? Of course it did, so why did you specifically disregard what he told you to do?

Did it? How can Ford employ someone that it does not employ?

You are really losing the plot.

Well show me the truth

No problem, Sean screwed up and used a faulty model. You decided to defend him and now that I have shown you how ridiculous your position is you are resorting to petty tactics in order to "save" your dignity. Unfortunately for you, all you are doing is destroying what little dignity you have left.

farson135:

Overhead:
Sure I can show you.

I am waiting.

Why don't you show me the way by responsibly answering these questions

Sure, you are completely wrong in every way shape and form and you prove that by your inability to prove your point. That the answer you are looking for?

Really. You're analysing what he wrote? Then answer these questions

No need, your questions are irrelevant.

Well you could show me your ability to answer the questions being asked by answering the question now;

So you need me to prove your point for you. Rather pathetic don't you think? Then again, you prove me right with every post.

So you don't think you have a problem with answering questions honestly.

Nope. I just have a problem with people who play these kinds of games. At this point you are just being obstinate and taking up valuable space.

Really? I've found pretty much every response of yours irrelevent yet have answered them anyway in good faith.

In your opinion but your opinion does not equal fact.

What was the specific company used in his example and did that company historically and famously have lots of outside buyers? Yes.

Actually the company he used as his model never existed. That is why it is a model. He used a singular example from one real company but his model is fake.

He told you to take the Ford company as an example.

He took an element from the Ford Company as an example.

Did it or did it not have masses of outside employees? Of course it did, so why did you specifically disregard what he told you to do?

Did it? How can Ford employ someone that it does not employ?

You are really losing the plot.

Well show me the truth

No problem, Sean screwed up and used a faulty model. You decided to defend him and now that I have shown you how ridiculous your position is you are resorting to petty tactics in order to "save" your dignity. Unfortunately for you, all you are doing is destroying what little dignity you have left.

Still waiting for just a basic response to these two simple questions which cut straight to the heart of the debate. Refusal to answer them is tantamount to admitting you are wrong. You've answered plenty of other questions you claim are irrelevent but not these two. Give it a shot:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Overhead:
Still waiting for just a basic response to these two simple questions which cut straight to the heart of the debate.

As am I and I asked first.

Refusal to answer them is tantamount to admitting you are wrong.

That is true in your case. After all, I asked a question that you refuse to answer. Yet, somehow, you expect me to continue to play your game. Answer my question (I asked first). If you cannot then admit defeat.

So many distortions of the ethos of libertarianism. If you are a libertarian you have to be able to function without government. Thus you have to be able to pick up after yourself and police yourself.

Big_Willie_Styles:
And, magically, the foreign policy of Paulbots isn't an option. That's where Paulbots lose me. They're just cribbing the maniac that is Noam Chomsky anyway.

So you think that starting the Federal Reserve and the IRS up so we could join fight alongside the Brits and French in WW1 was a great idea?

I would have preferred that Britain not disarm and Wilson never went to the bargaining table at Versailles. That way the awful stage wasn't set for the national socialist party in germany.

I think the world would have been better off if we stuck to our neutrality.

aelreth:
So many distortions of the ethos of libertarianism. If you are a libertarian you have to be able to function without government. Thus you have to be able to pick up after yourself and police yourself.

Big_Willie_Styles:
And, magically, the foreign policy of Paulbots isn't an option. That's where Paulbots lose me. They're just cribbing the maniac that is Noam Chomsky anyway.

So you think that starting the Federal Reserve and the IRS up so we could join fight alongside the Brits and French in WW1 was a great idea?

I would have preferred that Britain not disarm and Wilson never went to the bargaining table at Versailles. That way the awful stage wasn't set for the national socialist party in germany.

I think the world would have been better off if we stuck to our neutrality.

What you're arguing for is anarchy. Libertarianism is not truly about anarchy. Anarchism is.

Wilson was a massive racist largely responsible for the resurgence of the KKK. He's my least favorite president, for many reasons. He did a lot of stupid things.

You seem to be suffering from hindsight bias.

CAPCHA: pipe dream

farson135:

Overhead:
Still waiting for just a basic response to these two simple questions which cut straight to the heart of the debate.

As am I and I asked first.

Refusal to answer them is tantamount to admitting you are wrong.

That is true in your case. After all, I asked a question that you refuse to answer. Yet, somehow, you expect me to continue to play your game. Answer my question (I asked first). If you cannot then admit defeat.

If there are questions you feel you're waiting on that you asked first, ask them and link to where you asked them before I posted my questions. Otherwise answer the following:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

farson135:
No problem, Sean screwed up and used a faulty model. You decided to defend him and now that I have shown you how ridiculous your position is you are resorting to petty tactics in order to "save" your dignity. Unfortunately for you, all you are doing is destroying what little dignity you have left.

I used the model of a business with employees that makes its money by selling things. Is that a faulty model?

he only mentioned one single marketing effort by Ford.

Sort of, but certainly not in the way that you mean. I made reference to one decision, that regarding how much to pay laborers. So I analyzed the effects of that decision. I concluded that the benefit of doing so to the company ceteris paribus (and under the assumption that it would not increase productivity-- which in reality was false, see below) was negative. You even seemed to agree with this-- though I really can't be sure you'll keep doing so (or agree that you did so in the first place, as the way you interpret text seems to disregard its plain meaning.) With reference to the incentives of businesses, I've made a perfectly good case for my position and roundly smacked down your objection by showing that literally giving away your product is superior to paying workers more to try to get them to buy your stuff for the "free" advertisement. Another thing that is probably even better than giving away free cars is taking out ads in newspapers or hiring people to showcase the automobile at fairs or trade shows and the like. And then, of course, tell them how much it costs and where they can get one. How many articulate and responsible people do you think would have done that for awhile back then just for a free automobile? Or even just the chance to drive one around for awhile showing it off and then return it?

Basically, I made the same argument made in the opening of this piece on Forbes (that I found just now by Google searching "henry ford five dollar day").

Here is their version of almost precisely the same argument:

Forbes:
There's an argument you see around sometimes about Henry Ford's decision to pay his workers those famed $5 a day wages. It was that he realised that he should pay his workers sufficiently large sums to that they could afford the products they were making. In this manner he could expand the market for his products.

It should be obvious that this story doesn't work: Boeing would most certainly be in trouble if they had to pay their workers sufficient to afford a new jetliner. It's also obviously true that you want every other employer to be paying their workers sufficient that they can afford your products: but that's very much not the same as claiming that Ford should pay his workers so that they can afford Fords.

I obviously went into greater detail as to how the idea fails, but umm... there you go. The article goes into greater detail about how Ford's somewhat revolutionary wage increase was made for other reasons-- it is more historical. Note: the author doesn't mention anything remotely close to "free advertising" by workers that spend 9 hour shifts in the factory. Wonder why not.

As regards the more general point, way back on page 3 you said the following:

farson135:
This is a basic economic principle. The better off the civilization the more the people can buy. Americans can buy more because we are well off.

I said something referencing that idea even before that:

Seanchaidh:
... the best way for a business to approach the situation of absolute freedom is to let others suffer the delusion that paying workers more by itself increases profits and take advantage of the market that they create

Which is similar to saying this:

Forbes:
It's also obviously true that you want every other employer to be paying their workers sufficient that they can afford your products: but that's very much not the same as claiming that Ford should pay his workers so that they can afford Fords.

Now, my last argument with you involved collective action problems (also called coordination problems.) Do you see the one that businesses potentially face in this case?

Big_Willie_Styles:

aelreth:
So many distortions of the ethos of libertarianism. If you are a libertarian you have to be able to function without government. Thus you have to be able to pick up after yourself and police yourself.

Big_Willie_Styles:
And, magically, the foreign policy of Paulbots isn't an option. That's where Paulbots lose me. They're just cribbing the maniac that is Noam Chomsky anyway.

So you think that starting the Federal Reserve and the IRS up so we could join fight alongside the Brits and French in WW1 was a great idea?

I would have preferred that Britain not disarm and Wilson never went to the bargaining table at Versailles. That way the awful stage wasn't set for the national socialist party in germany.

I think the world would have been better off if we stuck to our neutrality.

What you're arguing for is anarchy. Libertarianism is not truly about anarchy. Anarchism is.

Wilson was a massive racist largely responsible for the resurgence of the KKK. He's my least favorite president, for many reasons. He did a lot of stupid things.

You seem to be suffering from hindsight bias.

CAPCHA: pipe dream

I'm arguing for responsibility and accountability for the individual. Not the government holding our hands like an adult holds the hands of children. If you want to live free you have to be disciplined enough to do so.

Hindsight bias you call it, perhaps the wisdom of George Washington telling us to stay out of entangling alliances shows wisdom.

Blaster395:
Libertarian systems would allow unended greed so the mutually beneficial capitalist businesses can be more beneficial, but there would be nothing to encourage them to be mutually beneficial.

Communist systems don't fully allow people to use their greed so mutually beneficial greed-based entities wouldn't exist, but at the same time there would be no harmful greed-based entities.

I don't agree with these assessments at all. Libertarian systems don't have to mean gutting regulations and oversight beyond reason, and the very game of business generally means that the private sector has to provide and satisfy people in order to survive. It's there to succeed or fail by the people. Communism isn't about people, it's about the State, and it's accepted only by the ignorant, indifferent and willing subjects.

Overhead:
Government isn't necessarily beneficial, but at least in that regard it is superior to Capitalism. Perhaps there are other things which make government worse, other factors which have nothing to do with the profit motive that you will have to point out, but the different way wealth is treated by capitalist businesses and democratic governments clearly shows governments as being less harmful.

At the moment government fulfills many important social functions. By removing government to allow business to take them over, based on the profit motive at least we would be opening the door for a lot of harm as social benefit is trampled in the rush for profit.

Government is not superior to Capitalism, it is necessary with it (like all things). Necessary in that we're not advocating its abolition or the end of private sector regulations such as those that prevent abuse.

I'm in favor of policing the private sector. I'm not in favor of taking a State that polices itself and giving it more power than it needs, delegating it out of the peoples' control and into its own dirty hands. If there is a tug of war it should always err on the side of the people.

AgedGrunt:
Government is not superior to Capitalism, it is necessary with it (like all things). Necessary in that we're not advocating its abolition or the end of private sector regulations such as those that prevent abuse.

Government might be necessary for capitalism, but capitalism isn't necessary for government.

But even ignoring the possibility of doing away with Capitalism all together, we can still talk about how much influence it should have and we are able to say that X would be handled better if controlled directly by the government than by capitalism.

I'm in favor of policing the private sector. I'm not in favor of taking a State that polices itself and giving it more power than it needs, delegating it out of the peoples' control and into its own dirty hands. If there is a tug of war it should always err on the side of the people.

Well the question is how much does it need? Also delegating it into government hands can bring it into people's control and simply assuming the government's hands are dirty is silly (I'm sure all governments do things wrong, but I don't see you using the same emphatic language about Capitalism).

I also believe that in a tug of war it's always best to err on the side of the people - looking at the greater social good. Which as stated in my last few posts, I believe will not be in a capitalist system.

Overhead:
If there are questions you feel you're waiting on that you asked first, ask them and link to where you asked them before I posted my questions.

Post #115 and about a dozen posts between then and now. "Why would he discuss one single element when that lone element is irrelevant to my point?"

Seanchaidh:
I used the model of a business with employees that makes its money by selling things. Is that a faulty model?

If that was it then no (and the model would be very boring). You cut off outside purchasers. You admitted to doing it.

I made reference to one decision, that regarding how much to pay laborers. So I analyzed the effects of that decision. I concluded that the benefit of doing so to the company ceteris paribus (and under the assumption that it would not increase productivity-- which in reality was false, see below) was negative.

In other words, you agree. You only mentioned one single element from that company.

You even seemed to agree with this-- though I really can't be sure you'll keep doing so (or agree that you did so in the first place, as the way you interpret text seems to disregard its plain meaning.)

I do. Your problem is the same as it has always been. Your model sucks.

With reference to the incentives of businesses, I've made a perfectly good case for my position and roundly smacked down your objection by showing that literally giving away your product is superior to paying workers more to try to get them to buy your stuff for the "free" advertisement.

No you have not. You said it was but you never proved it.

farson135:

Overhead:
If there are questions you feel you're waiting on that you asked first, ask them and link to where you asked them before I posted my questions.

Post #115 and about a dozen posts between then and now. "Why would he discuss one single element when that lone element is irrelevant to my point?"

Answered originally in post 118 and then several times afterwards.

You may not like the answers, but I treated your question seriously and didn't avoid the question by saying your concerns about his point being irrelevant were themselves irrelevant.

Now:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

I believe, like communism, its great idea, in THEORY.

I was reading a great article about how Libertarianism is basically wishful thinking, because, when you come down to it, there's just no way it could happen, and it hasn't happened. Look around the world, among the hundreds of nations today and in history we've tried basically every form of known government in varying degrees.
Except Libertarianism.

So to sum up, great idea, but mostly a pipe dream.

Overhead:

Well the question is how much does it need? Also delegating it into government hands can bring it into people's control and simply assuming the government's hands are dirty is silly (I'm sure all governments do things wrong, but I don't see you using the same emphatic language about Capitalism).

I also believe that in a tug of war it's always best to err on the side of the people - looking at the greater social good. Which as stated in my last few posts, I believe will not be in a capitalist system.

In my mind such a thing is about accountability.

If placed in the governments hands it would still be subject to the same human frailties as the individual owner, only now exponentially worse since it's across the frailties of more people. Not to mention that these people do not know how to manage it better than the person who created and maintained it up until that point.

Next we have the competition aspect against them. Where a maverick could potentially deliver services at a far lower cost and make up the profit in volume. This also can be used against cartels that form that use price rigging to lock in profits by colluding with their competition. The government more often enough does not allow competition against their cartel. You would run afoul with many powerful people and their rent-seeking schemes.

They are also subject the whims of the marketplace. Ultimately if their product sucks, individually owned businesses can go away. However if you are say, the city of Detroit, you can make the taxpayers afford to pay someone to put horseshoes on horses even though there is no rational need for it. http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/17404

Also the bringing up the fetish word was rather telling. Until your side gets price discovery right, it will still fall to Mises's predictions. Although if technology moves fast enough prices won't be needed if we are no longer in a world of scarcity instead then of opulence.

AgedGrunt:

My other point wasn't disputing whether problems exist in government, it's the premeditation business seems to be accused of by some people, that the private sector knows it will cause harm but a need to profit demands it anyway, whereas a tone seems to exist with some that government isn't about harming but, well, shit happens. If that doesn't describe you then nevermind.

Businesses may vary, some are more ethical than others. But on the other hand, we do know perfectly well that corporations are highly prone to premeditatively screw others. There has hardly been a shortage of corporate scandals in the last decade. They push for deregulation so they can pollute more freely, lend more recklessly, and so on. They do so because their eyes on on profits more than other concerns.

I would suggest government is less prone to this. Let's not forget, much of what government is doing - that may knowingly be socially deterimental - is done so catering to the wishes of their own electorate.

Also, as a teacher, I would think that a big challenge in your job is taking the very complex and making it very simple, but am surprised you do so by omission. I prefer to think of an assistant professor using the space of two chalkboards and reading from his notes to explain physics to PhD students and a senior professor that can give a demonstration that shows the same principle which a child can understand. That is to say you don't need to complicate a matter; communicate it.

I am not principally a teacher; I do some voluntary undergraduate teaching.

Teaching needs to be at a level suitable for the students. Each extra level of education introduces new levels of complexity. This therefore means one of the principles of teaching is - where necessary - withholding complexity from students.

We shouldn't make the world needlessly complicated and in my opinion big government embodies that philosophy to the Nth degree. It's likely that's where we end up disagreeing.

I think bureaucracies can have a tendency to overcomplicate. It is easier to add to an existing system than start from scratch, and so this is preferred - usually up to the point that the inefficiencies of a overcomplicated system outweigh the benefits of rebuilding it from the ground up. A certain problem of government is that - unlike a corporation - it tends to have less motive to increase efficiency and a greater inertia (frequently political resistance) that obstructs change.

But I also maintain that the complexity of government, law, and so on is also to a large extent a reaction to the complexity of the world itself.

aelreth:

Overhead:

Well the question is how much does it need? Also delegating it into government hands can bring it into people's control and simply assuming the government's hands are dirty is silly (I'm sure all governments do things wrong, but I don't see you using the same emphatic language about Capitalism).

I also believe that in a tug of war it's always best to err on the side of the people - looking at the greater social good. Which as stated in my last few posts, I believe will not be in a capitalist system.

In my mind such a thing is about accountability.

If placed in the governments hands it would still be subject to the same human frailties as the individual owner, only now exponentially worse since it's across the frailties of more people. Not to mention that these people do not know how to manage it better than the person who created and maintained it up until that point.

Next we have the competition aspect against them. Where a maverick could potentially deliver services at a far lower cost and make up the profit in volume. This also can be used against cartels that form that use price rigging to lock in profits by colluding with their competition. The government more often enough does not allow competition against their cartel. You would run afoul with many powerful people and their rent-seeking schemes.

They are also subject the whims of the marketplace. Ultimately if their product sucks, individually owned businesses can go away. However if you are say, the city of Detroit, you can make the taxpayers afford to pay someone to put horseshoes on horses even though there is no rational need for it. http://www.michigancapitolconfidential.com/17404

Also the bringing up the fetish word was rather telling. Until your side gets price discovery right, it will still fall to Mises's predictions. Although if technology moves fast enough prices won't be needed if we are no longer in a world of scarcity instead then of opulence.

To start off I'd just like to say that your view of humanity seems utterly pessimistic and quite depressing.

Now one problem is you you make massive assumptions about how people work based of your personal ideology that simply aren't true when you scratch a little deeper. Take your belief that putting the running of an organisation in more hands makes it more frail due to human failty. That's not necessarily the case, it depends on the people and on the structure. Just in the news recently we've seen how one ethical person (Snowden) can speak out and bring to light and undermine institutional problems. More importantly, we know that adding extra people in the form of independent oversight comittees doesn't weaken and organisation but rather strengthens it and protects of from 'frailties'.

As for "Not to mention that these people do not know how to manage it better than the person who created and maintained it up until that point" I simply can't take that as anything more than a simple homily with no basis in reality.

For one the trend of Capitalism is precisely for large groups of people to involve themselves with businesses that they didn't create or maintain - namely investors/stockholders/etc. Now I personally detest these groups and would not hold them up as examples of a group that is able to run businesses well (by my standards), but the point remains that what you are decrying as awful is itself a core aspect of of the system you are promoting.

The ability of capital to flow towards the greatest profit making it very hard to commit large amount of money to things which do not have guaranteed benefits or only have long-term benefits. Look at General Motors, earlier in the 20th century the biggest company in the entire world. It focused on everything other than research to keep it's investors happy other than actually developing better cars. It bought back its own shares. It focused on finance through GMAC. It lobbied government to impose protectionist policies on foreign manufacturers. It had constantly downsized.

All these things maximised shareholder profits. All these things eventually lead to to bankruptcy. William Lazonick even calculated that if it hadn't been getting involved in share buybacks, that alone would have meant it didn't go bankrupt. So why did they do it? Because shareholders can pull their money out in an instant. Telling them how you're going to be investing a hundred million in a twenty year programme to develop a more efficient car doesn't get you money. Telling them you're downsizing to increase profit and reusing capital expenditure in investment so you have more money to use profiting the shareholders gets you money.

Now I included those last two paragraphs, firstly to illustrate the negative aspects of investors/stockholders/etc. Secondly to point out that businesses are fallible, they fail often and there is no reason to think that a non-Capitalist organisation would do worse.

My last point is that there are obvious examples we can take out of history where the government certainly did know what they were doing better than the managing directors. Let's take South Korea as our example. Though it's held as a beacon of free enterprise, to build their economy in the first place the government took a very direct hand in the running of businesses.

In the 1960's South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world with an economy based on natural resources and low technology/labour intensive work. Due to comparative advantage it was seen as foolish for it to go ahead with a planned massive capital investment program in a steel mill, especially as it had no iron or coke and these would have to be imported from thousands of miles away. It was a program no investor would touch, that the World Bank advised every nation to ignore and that only got paid for with Japanese reparation payments.

It quickly became one of the world's best producers of low-quality steel, a massive international success story and the 4th biggest steel manufacturer in the world. At the same time the government banned LG from going into textiles (which it wanted to) and made it go into cables and electronics, resulting in it becoming the massive corporation it is today. Similarily the dictator at the time forced the Hyundai group to become a shipbuilder which they balked at but agreed when were threatened with bankruptcy, resulting in it now being one of the largest shipbuilders in the world.

I'd also like to take a quote from a senior Kobe Steel manager which, while an anecdote, does highlight a good portion of my point.

"I am sorry to say this, but you economists don't understand how the world works. I have a PhD in metallurgy and have been working in Kobe Steel for nearly three decades, so I know a thing or two about steel-making. However, my company is now so large and complex that even I do not understand more than half the things that are going on within it. As for the other managers - with backgrounds in accounting and marketing - they really haven't much of a clue. Despite this, our board of directors routinely approves the majority of projects submitted by out employees, because we believe that our employees work for the good of the company. If we assumed that everyone is out to promote his own interests and questioned the motivations of our employees all the time, the company would grind to a halt, as we would spend all our time doing through proposals that we really don't understand. You simply cannot run a large bureaucratic organisation, be it Kobe Steel or your government, if you assume everyone is out for himself."

If this is the viewpoint in a capitalist business where advancement, profit and wages and meant to be the primary motivators, it goes doubly so for non-capitalist organisations where these pressures are much weaker.

Onto your next point, the profit motive can encourage good behaviour like efficiency. It can also encourage bad behaviour like cutting corners, lying, bribery, etc. That there are some positive aspects to competition isn't something I've ever denied and doesn't effect my point. The question is whether the capitalist method is the supreme one that we want to use once the benefits and deficiencies are weighed up.

It's also worth mentioning that you're correlating competition and capitalism, which don't always go hand in hand. Large businesses which have a monopoly on the market, sparsely populated areas which don't have a large enough population for a competitive market (eg one one fish and chip shop, only one supermarket, only one butcher, etc).

As for the whims of the marketplace, being subject to the whims of the marketplace isn't necessarily a good thing just like being subject to the whims of a democratic government isn't necessarily a good thing. If the whims of the marketplace had had their way, masses of people would have been homeless and living in awful poverty at the last financial collapse. While the approach taken isn't one I would have supported, the whims of the market place aren't something intrinsically beneficial. When a business goes broke that's masses of jobs lost. Also your article says that the horseshoer works as a blacksmith and does general repair work with the job title simply being an anachronism.

Also Mises was an Austrian school economist but even he admitted money wasn't intrinsically valuable. Also simply telling me that the economic theories I beleive in are wrong and the economic theories you believe in are right because the economist you like said my economist was wrong doesn't really show anything. Especially when the economist you're using is one that was slated by more influential members of his own economic school of thought, like Hayek.

Overhead:
Answered originally in post 118 and then several times afterwards.

No it has not. You talk about implications but you have never shown me a single location where he said the opposite of what I said he did. And I have shown you several occasions where he said what I said he did.

You may not like the answers, but I treated your question seriously

Then why didn't you answer it?

didn't avoid the question by saying your concerns about his point being irrelevant were themselves irrelevant.

No, you avoided it by not talking about it.

farson135:

Overhead:
Answered originally in post 118 and then several times afterwards.

No it has not. You talk about implications but you have never shown me a single location where he said the opposite of what I said he did. And I have shown you several occasions where he said what I said he did.

You may not like the answers, but I treated your question seriously

Then why didn't you answer it?

didn't avoid the question by saying your concerns about his point being irrelevant were themselves irrelevant.

No, you avoided it by not talking about it.

Spent a few thousand words already responding to these points (Not my fault you were unable to follow it), while I'm looking for two single word answers to the following questions:

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

Overhead:
Spent a few thousand words already responding to these points (Not my fault you were unable to follow it)

It is your fault for being unable to answer the posts. Maybe you should have tried writing something useful instead of wasting people's time.

Overhead:
But even ignoring the possibility of doing away with Capitalism all together, we can still talk about how much influence it should have and we are able to say that X would be handled better if controlled directly by the government than by capitalism.

You can reverse the words capitalism and government and have that discussion, as well. All I'm wondering is why you believe a bureaucracy is, by its own nature, more righteous than private business.

It's far worse to have bad government than it is bad business. Even decent government can clean up bad business; it's extremely difficult if not impossible to fix runaway government. That's why I believe in minimizing it down to the essentials, setting strict limits and restoring lower-level government sovereignty.

Agema:
...we do know perfectly well that corporations are highly prone to premeditatively screw others. There has hardly been a shortage of corporate scandals in the last decade. They push for deregulation so they can pollute more freely, lend more recklessly, and so on. They do so because their eyes on on profits more than other concerns.

I would suggest government is less prone to this. Let's not forget, much of what government is doing - that may knowingly be socially deterimental - is done so catering to the wishes of their own electorate.

I feel it's disingenuous to assert that businesses are more focused on the money and deregulation rather than their own clientele, whereas government is out to serve its people. One could just as easily say that business and government give the people what they need and want.

Giving either side too much power is going to increase the chances of harm/abuse. As I say above, government is a far worse disaster to have go wrong, and making it overly complicated creates a bundle of knots to untangle. This is why some go on to cutting the cords (rebellion), because sometimes it's not possible to get back to the way things ought to be.

AgedGrunt:

Overhead:
But even ignoring the possibility of doing away with Capitalism all together, we can still talk about how much influence it should have and we are able to say that X would be handled better if controlled directly by the government than by capitalism.

You can reverse the words capitalism and government and have that discussion, as well. All I'm wondering is why you believe a bureaucracy is, by its own nature, more righteous than private business.

It's far worse to have bad government than it is bad business. Even decent government can clean up bad business; it's extremely difficult if not impossible to fix runaway government. That's why I believe in minimizing it down to the essentials, setting strict limits and restoring lower-level government sovereignty.

For one I think your use of the word bureaucracy isn't apt as many large businesses have massive bureaucracies.

But to discuss your main point, I'm not sure which is easier to fix between businesses and government. I suppose it would depend on the specifics of the situation, but to simply state that governments are by harder to fix smacks of ideology. One key different separating them is governments have elections. As imperfect as they may be, something which differs from nation to nation, there is the opportunity there to throw out the government and replace it with a new one. With companies there is no such prerequisite. If a company is acting within the bounds of the law, then no matter how corrupt or immoral or cartoonishly evil they are, there is no definite mechanism to effect change.

The other main difference comes down to the fact that, as I stated in my earlier posts, businesses don't need to be corrupt to be harmful.

Businesses aren't designed with social benefit in mind in the way that governments are.

If a government is harming people then they might be corrupt, they might be incompetent, they might be holding to the wrong ideology, etc. Whatever has happened, they're not meant to be causing harm so something has gone horribly wrong.

The same does not hold true with businesses. There's meant to be a rough correlation between profit and some kind of social benefit, but it is quite rough and sometimes it's massive net-harm to society.

I'll give you an example. Massive pharmaceutical companies are not staffed by giggling psychopaths. They do not sit around laughing at the deaths of people that suffer and die from preventable diseases.

Yet all the same, every day, every year, they are pumping massive amounts of money into erectile disfunction, hair loss and other minor problems while masses of people are dying of disease. The profit motive draws them towards pursuing these treatments because stopping poor black people from dying in their millions in developing countries earns shit all.

They're not (necessarily) dodging taxes, they're not (necessarily) taxing bribes, they're not (necessarily) doing anything wrong or corrupt but that doesn't stop them from doing massive harm. To talk about corruption misses the point.

In fact even the above example doesn't really get to the core point which is a much more complex explanation involving the exploitative extraction of surplus value from the workers, the heirarchal set-up damaging to the lives of people that must live in it, etc.

Exploitation is a basic facet of Capitalism. It's a core component and a default reason why in any comparison Capitalism is going to start off wrong-footed.

farson135:

Overhead:
Spent a few thousand words already responding to these points (Not my fault you were unable to follow it)

It is your fault for being unable to answer the posts. Maybe you should have tried writing something useful instead of wasting people's time.

More unsupported opinion trying to distract from the fact you can't answer 2 simple questions because they'd make your entire argument collapse.

1) At the very start of the example, did he or did he not tell you that it would be using the famous example of Henry Ford?

2) Did Henry Ford or did he not sell massive amounts of cars to people who weren't his employees?

aelreth:

I'm arguing for responsibility and accountability for the individual. Not the government holding our hands like an adult holds the hands of children. If you want to live free you have to be disciplined enough to do so.

Hindsight bias you call it, perhaps the wisdom of George Washington telling us to stay out of entangling alliances shows wisdom.

Yes, but the government serves a few just functions. Preserving the rule of law, protecting our rights. The rest of what the federal government does can mostly eff off, but that is too important to not be done.

Overhead:

To start off I'd just like to say that your view of humanity seems utterly pessimistic and quite depressing.

Now one problem is you you make massive assumptions about how people work based of your personal ideology that simply aren't true when you scratch a little deeper. Take your belief that putting the running of an organisation in more hands makes it more frail due to human failty. That's not necessarily the case, it depends on the people and on the structure. Just in the news recently we've seen how one ethical person (Snowden) can speak out and bring to light and undermine institutional problems. More importantly, we know that adding extra people in the form of independent oversight comittees doesn't weaken and organisation but rather strengthens it and protects of from 'frailties'.

Snowden wasn't running anything. His actions have yet to stop the behemoth. The thing he fights has the backings of the state. Even now with the truth out, the NSA director can lie to congress with utter impunity. The institutional problem is a feature to the state. This is what they wanted.

Even so it takes an individual of strong character, yet you fail to understand that the will of bureaucracy prevents others from speaking out. This is the case in all collectives. Going against it will result in pain.

Overhead:

As for "Not to mention that these people do not know how to manage it better than the person who created and maintained it up until that point" I simply can't take that as anything more than a simple homily with no basis in reality.

For one the trend of Capitalism is precisely for large groups of people to involve themselves with businesses that they didn't create or maintain - namely investors/stockholders/etc. Now I personally detest these groups and would not hold them up as examples of a group that is able to run businesses well (by my standards), but the point remains that what you are decrying as awful is itself a core aspect of of the system you are promoting.

The ability of capital to flow towards the greatest profit making it very hard to commit large amount of money to things which do not have guaranteed benefits or only have long-term benefits. Look at General Motors, earlier in the 20th century the biggest company in the entire world. It focused on everything other than research to keep it's investors happy other than actually developing better cars. It bought back its own shares. It focused on finance through GMAC. It lobbied government to impose protectionist policies on foreign manufacturers. It had constantly downsized.

More rent seeking. Speaking of GMAC (A bank) since most of these banks operate out of NYC who was in charge of the NY Federal Reserve while this was going down? Perhaps we should have had our treasury secretary look into that matter.

Overhead:

All these things maximised shareholder profits. All these things eventually lead to to bankruptcy. William Lazonick even calculated that if it hadn't been getting involved in share buybacks, that alone would have meant it didn't go bankrupt. So why did they do it? Because shareholders can pull their money out in an instant. Telling them how you're going to be investing a hundred million in a twenty year programme to develop a more efficient car doesn't get you money. Telling them you're downsizing to increase profit and reusing capital expenditure in investment so you have more money to use profiting the shareholders gets you money.

Now I included those last two paragraphs, firstly to illustrate the negative aspects of investors/stockholders/etc. Secondly to point out that businesses are fallible, they fail often and there is no reason to think that a non-Capitalist organisation would do worse.

Sounds like most Triple AAA game publishers just with a longer timeline. This is inevitable, all the more reason why you shouldn't let your company go public. Instead they should pass it down to their chosen successor. Handing it to the collective will of share holders will only serve their short term will. Bondholders in my mind are much more sane. They have a timeline that exists in decades.

Like locusts the share holders only interested in their short term gain will eat out it's sustenance until they find a new host. Their timeline is measured in how long it takes to reach their target yield. If we were in an healthy economy that had a higher interest rate and could survive it (US debt is way too high) savings would be used to expand business rather than chase yield.

I have no problem if a non-capitalist organization of some kind exists, endures or prospers so long as I am not expending my labor or it's fruits to maintain it. Any dealings I have with such an entity should be honored on both sides of the deal. This is the same with any Capitalist entity.

Overhead:

My last point is that there are obvious examples we can take out of history where the government certainly did know what they were doing better than the managing directors. Let's take South Korea as our example. Though it's held as a beacon of free enterprise, to build their economy in the first place the government took a very direct hand in the running of businesses.

In the 1960's South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world with an economy based on natural resources and low technology/labour intensive work. Due to comparative advantage it was seen as foolish for it to go ahead with a planned massive capital investment program in a steel mill, especially as it had no iron or coke and these would have to be imported from thousands of miles away. It was a program no investor would touch, that the World Bank advised every nation to ignore and that only got paid for with Japanese reparation payments.

It quickly became one of the world's best producers of low-quality steel, a massive international success story and the 4th biggest steel manufacturer in the world. At the same time the government banned LG from going into textiles (which it wanted to) and made it go into cables and electronics, resulting in it becoming the massive corporation it is today. Similarily the dictator at the time forced the Hyundai group to become a shipbuilder which they balked at but agreed when were threatened with bankruptcy, resulting in it now being one of the largest shipbuilders in the world.

I'd also like to take a quote from a senior Kobe Steel manager which, while an anecdote, does highlight a good portion of my point.

"I am sorry to say this, but you economists don't understand how the world works. I have a PhD in metallurgy and have been working in Kobe Steel for nearly three decades, so I know a thing or two about steel-making. However, my company is now so large and complex that even I do not understand more than half the things that are going on within it. As for the other managers - with backgrounds in accounting and marketing - they really haven't much of a clue. Despite this, our board of directors routinely approves the majority of projects submitted by out employees, because we believe that our employees work for the good of the company. If we assumed that everyone is out to promote his own interests and questioned the motivations of our employees all the time, the company would grind to a halt, as we would spend all our time doing through proposals that we really don't understand. You simply cannot run a large bureaucratic organisation, be it Kobe Steel or your government, if you assume everyone is out for himself."

If this is the viewpoint in a capitalist business where advancement, profit and wages and meant to be the primary motivators, it goes doubly so for non-capitalist organisations where these pressures are much weaker.

They were free to choose which model works for them. It seems to have worked for them. One should not force others to forfeit their property. Also so you know I have no love for the IMF and the world bank since they are a cartel given license to the state to their own monopoly of currency.

Were they free to fire and hire as they see fit? Were they free to set wages? Were they free to set the minimum required productivity?

To me it sounds like each compartment of the organization was free to determine how it should best serve the organization. Each part was held accountable.

Sounds like they were individuals trying to find the best way they can serve one another. Not some central planner deciding for them.

Overhead:

Onto your next point, the profit motive can encourage good behaviour like efficiency. It can also encourage bad behaviour like cutting corners, lying, bribery, etc. That there are some positive aspects to competition isn't something I've ever denied and doesn't effect my point. The question is whether the capitalist method is the supreme one that we want to use once the benefits and deficiencies are weighed up.

It's also worth mentioning that you're correlating competition and capitalism, which don't always go hand in hand. Large businesses which have a monopoly on the market, sparsely populated areas which don't have a large enough population for a competitive market (eg one one fish and chip shop, only one supermarket, only one butcher, etc).

Yet the state enforces these local monopolies with licensing. Then the established will write regulations to keep smaller businesses from entering their sector.

Overhead:

As for the whims of the marketplace, being subject to the whims of the marketplace isn't necessarily a good thing just like being subject to the whims of a democratic government isn't necessarily a good thing. If the whims of the marketplace had had their way, masses of people would have been homeless and living in awful poverty at the last financial collapse. While the approach taken isn't one I would have supported, the whims of the market place aren't something intrinsically beneficial. When a business goes broke that's masses of jobs lost. Also your article says that the horseshoer works as a blacksmith and does general repair work with the job title simply being an anachronism.

The polls tell a different story. Before during and after TARP, the people were against it. Instead now we are left with the same problems as last time but more debt than before.

Overhead:

Also Mises was an Austrian school economist but even he admitted money wasn't intrinsically valuable. Also simply telling me that the economic theories I beleive in are wrong and the economic theories you believe in are right because the economist you like said my economist was wrong doesn't really show anything. Especially when the economist you're using is one that was slated by more influential members of his own economic school of thought, like Hayek.

Correct, it's what the "money" is backed with. It's also why Zimbwambawe's 100 trillion dollar bill isn't worth anything.

Also those given the power to print the "money" will inevitably abuse it. That's why one should put some safeguards in place to keep it from being abused.

Big_Willie_Styles:

Yes, but the government serves a few just functions. Preserving the rule of law, protecting our rights. The rest of what the federal government does can mostly eff off, but that is too important to not be done.

After reviewing it's actions it sounds like it's priorities are reversed. Or perverse.

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