- Capitalism and Alternatives -

You completely missed the point!

Posted by: Nikhil Jaikumar ( DSA, MA, USA ) on December 12, 1999 at 17:21:16:

In Reply to: Huh? Oh, yes, it is lovely weather......... posted by Frenchy on December 11, 1999 at 21:20:13:

: : You evidently have no clue. India was wealtheir than England at the time of colonization, particularly in the textile industry.

: Oh, I didn't know that. How were these textiles produced? I didn't know that India even had industry. How about some background on that? Apparently your right, I have no clue. Beside a textile industry, what other industry was available in India?

I'll post the title of a book by a guy named Kosambi, sometime....

: : starvation didn't becoem a problem until the population began to grwo steadily. How come teh worst famines in her history happened to India AFTER the British took power?

: May I remind you of the drubbing I took when I brought up the experiences of my dad?

The two aren't analogous. First of all, even if my dad hadn't been in Calcutta in 1944, there would still ahve been the famine there that killed 3 million people. Amaryta Sen has done more research on thsi than anyone, and he's demonstrated that the problem was not a lack of food, it was that the workers didn't have money to afford it.

: 1944? Wasn't there something going on at that time? Seems I recall there were ill feelings between most people in the world. WWII ring a bell? Think that may have had something to do with that famine? I suspect that there were a hell of a lot of people in the world in '44 who were sucking canal water, not only the Indians under the Brits. The Chinese come to mind, as well as the Russians.

You completely missed the point! Yes, lots of people were starving, in Leningrad, for example, because FOOD WASN"T AVAILABLE. But in Calcutta, food WAS available, it's just that the British didn't allow it to be distributed to thsoe who needed it. That's the difference. The three million dead in Calcutta were preventable.

: But if you insist that the Brits were to blame, who am I to disagree?

: : :The reason that castes no longer survive, according to NJ, is due to the influence of the Brits.

: : Are you incapable of paying attention and not misreading what I say? The abolition oif the caste system was due to India's socialism, which was laregly inspired by the Soviet Union.

: Thank God the Indians didn't go whole hog and and follow suit with the USSR and install Gulags too around the country.

Yes, thank God they didn't go the way of the US and exacerbayte social inequalities further. How does creating greater social equality lead to imprisonment of dissenters? That's ridiculous. And let's not forget that the US did plenty of spying on its own dissenters.
: : The British tolerated the worst abuses of teh caste system.

: Well, yeah, of course. The Indians themselves had already subjugated their entire population, if I were a Raj, I would've done the same thing. Wouldn't it have been idiotic of me to run a mercantilistic enterprise and then muck it up by stirring up sentiments of liberty?

But you were saying that the British were good and idealistic. Now you're saying taht they were pragmatic, nasty guys who did whatever oit took to keep tehmselves in power. Which is it? You can't have it both ways.

: : If India's response to teh caste system had been one of British liberalism, tehy woruld never have engaged in the sort oif sweeping, unprecedented affirmative action which they did- affirmative action doesn't exist in Britain.

: Affirmative action shouldn't exist anywhere, EXCEPT, in the case of individuals who want to grant school admission, promotion, job, etc. directly to a minority of their choice. Affirmative action = affirmative racism. Death to AA. Affirmatum agerum delenda est.

No society with inequalities can be truly civilized unless it does something about creating a society withoutthsoe inequalities. Affirmative actions is a necessary step forward. Unfortuantely, America seems to want to setp backward to the barbarism of a century ago.

: : :Parlimentary government? Yup, the Brits. Law, you can finish...

: : 'Law'? What do you mean, 'law'? Nonsense. Every society on earth ahs had their own system of laws; they don't owe that gift to anywhere.

: That's a legitimate claim and a slippery one at the same time. Law, as in individual liberty, a Bill of Rights, private ownership, in short the way we in this country accept law.
: I don't think you could say that about a country that created castes.

HAHHHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. You think that 'human rights' ooriginated in the country that created the world's first proletariat? Human rights, as we understand them today, originated after teh french revolution, but only became implemented in twentieth century countries.

: : Teh British never brought any form of democracy to india, quite the opposite. Was it 'democracy' to herd tpogether 400 peaceful protestors and kill them in one afternoon? Was it 'democracy' to divide up teh country between unelected bureaucrats and unelected monarchs? Give me a break. india, incidentally, had constitutionally democratic cuty states thousands of years ago.

: OK, but at the same time, the Brits did leave a legacy, an infrastructure, a path that they made India familiar with, regarding a different kind of society than that in which the average Indian was excluded. Ghandi was educated in England, where he earned his law degree after all. He was able to use British law to attain his ends, in much the same way that Martin Luther King did some decades later. Indian Parliment?

I hate to rell you, but teh average Indian contineud to be excluded underteh British. Democracy only came in 1947, with Independence and the socialist influences of Gandhi, Nehru, Ambedkar, the Communists, et al.

: : :
: : : : 2) endorsed 'pistol-whipping' a guy who suggested to peasants a philosophy he didn't like (so much for free speech and diversity of opinion)

: : : Ahh, you ere once again, to be charitable. I said that about an 'educated' person taking advantage of the ignorance of peasants to lead them by the nose.

: : Read the post again, Frenchy. Do you really oppose trying to get peasants to question why they are poor, not to blindly accept taht suffering is teh will fo God?

: Suffering sometimes is the will of God. Using Christianity to foment rebellion is extremly repugnant.

Yes. If poverty ifs teh will of God, why don't you give up everything you have and becoem poor? That's the reaction that I always have when I hear that.Christianity is ALL ABOUT hope. To sue it as a tool to keep people down is extremely despicable.

: : Is it better if they think taht suffering is divinely ordained?

: Some suffering is. Some is man made. Some is self-inflicted. Some may even be sought.

That's a dodge. is teh suffering of a poor Brazilian peasant divinely ordained?

: : Is it better if they never aspire to a greater position in life? And is it wrong to suggest to them taht tehre might be an alternative?

: No, No. It's just the idea of using partial knowledge to motivate people to do your bidding that is repulsive. Here's another example; In many of today's public schools homosexuality is promoted by activist teachers.

It's not 'promnoted', it's presented as morally equiavlent to heterosexuality, which it is.

:Youngsters are being indoctrinated that homosexuality and heterosexuality are morally equivilant.

I would tend to agree.

:Many of these children, trusting their teachers, will experiment with homosexulity, not yet having developed a firm understanding of their own rapidly changing bodies.

You think that people become hosmoexual because their teachers told them it was OK? Don't make me laugh.

: A certain percentage of males will die after contracting the AIDS virus.

There are so many things wrong with this I don't knwo where to start. Do you reaqly subscribe to the laughable notion that AIDS is a gay plague? Wake up. AIDS in America may be highly prevalent among homosexuals, but AIDS in America is a sideshow. The vast majority of AIDS cases in the world are in Africa and Southeast Asia, and the vast majority of those are spread heterosexually.

:These deaths are in the name of advancing a political belief.

Nonsense. So you think that homosexuals should be told that they are morally wrong just out fo effciiency considerations? Unless you can supply a MORAL reason why it's wrong, then you should teach people taht it's wrong. And what would sucha mroal reason be? It's certainly not 'unnatural'. The only valid argument I have ever seen is that the Old Testament (not even the words of Christ, for crying out loud) says so. That's fine, that's an OK ground to believe it, but not being a Christian or a Jew, don't expect me to condemn homosexuality. My religion never condemned it, nor do the secular value systems that I reapect.

: This is also taking advantage of intellectually defenseless people, a betrayal of a trusted position.
: Pistol whipping is justifiable in such cases. Unless you don't mind innocent kids being instructed to engage in behavior that is certain to lead to death.

Certain? Certain? That's ridiculous. The majority of homosexuals don't ever contract AIDS. That makes your sttaement simply false.

: If inspiring peopel and giving them hope is wrong, then Jesus Christ was wroing.
: Giving them hope by fomenting revolution, Socialism, Communism, redistribution of wealth, yes.

And this would be....why exactly? Let me ask you, Frenchy. What should Freire have told them? That God wanted them to remain in bondage? Isn't that despicable?

: : If purifying the name of God is wrong, then every religion is wrong.

: Nope, only your understanding of religion is wrong. Tell me, how do you square the Seventh Commandment with Communism/Socialism? How do you square the Fourth Commandment with the abolision of a heirarchy? How about the First, Second and Third Commandments with official state atheism?

I don't remember the order of the commandments, and I don't buy the first two anyway, tho' I'm fine with all the rest. Anyway, I seem to remmebre a commandment saying 'thou shall not steal'- that includes stealing the fruit of your workers' labors. And as for covetousness, isn't capitalism based on encouraging people to covet things? That's what our whole consumer economy is based on. Socialism, on the other hand, is based on assuring everyone a decent standard of living that a human being is entitled to.

Oh, yes, and how do the Nicaraguan Contras and the US in Vietnam square with 'Thou shalt not murder'?

: : And if asking questions is wrong, tehn you don't believe in free speech.
: Not quite true, asking questions is fine. Refusing to allow others to give differing answers, or rigging things so that others are not given the chance to voice an opposing point of view, that I have a problem with.

: : Freire didn't think he was propagandizing, he was suggesting to peasants- in a very humble, diffident way- that perhaps God wasn't responnsible for their suffering, and that perhaps they didn't have to suffer.

: So where is the opposing voice? Only one side of a story is propaganda.

Nonsense! They had the opposing propaganda every day of their lives! WHo doyou think indoctrinated them that their divinely ordained lot in life was to serve the bourgeoisie?

: : To him (and to me) that wasn'';t trying to impose anything on them, but rather to help them end their suffering- it was doing the only right thing under the circumstances.

: If his intent was to lead these ignorant peasants to Socialism/Communism, that's evil.

So you are the one who defines what's 'evil'? Shouldn't Freire have the freedom and the right to try and lead peopel to whatever he sees as the best, most just and righteous system?

: : : In light fo this, it'fs horrifuying taht you woudl stop peopel from trying to genuinely help otehr peopel, and mroeover would beat tehm up for their efforts.
: No, No, No. If you want to help others, fine. Don't hide behind religion though. Don't snooker some poor dupe into believing your personal interpretation of Christianity.

Why? Freire believed his interpretation was correct, therefore it was teh TRUE inetrpretation. And apparently Archbishop Helder Camara, Arcbishop Cardenal, Martin Luther King and Pope John XXIII agreed.

: : Perhaps you really do advocate a fascist state.
: Yeah, OK NJ, and let's not forget to mention that I'm a NAZI too.

: : :That's propaganda, any way you want to slice it. Socialism/Communism isn't just a philosophy that I don't like, it's a philosophy that leads to butchery of innocent people.

: : Oh, nonsense. That 'communism is murderous' canard got dated around 1900; wise up and do a little reading. 1) The Stalinist regimes weren't really communist.

: Thanx, I needed a good laugh. And your one of the brighter bulbs in this veritable chandelier of luminary Commies.

: 2) plenty fo non-murderous communsit / socialist states have existed. (Kerala? Bengal? Nicaragua? Guyana? Etcetera.)

: Nicaugua? Yes, I can see that my post concerning the nepotism of wonderful Nicaraugua wasn't read, at least not read by you. Kerala? Oh, yeah, that's the place where the Indian government subsidizes the entire state. I suppose you could count that as a success. I suppose.

They take out negative subsidies, actually, as they do in every state with a communist government-out of spite. I see that went unread by you.

: : 3) add up everyone killed by the few 'socialist' regimes that were really murdrtous, and they are still far less murderous than the right-wing capitalist regimes. (Can you say idnonesia? Belgium? Germany? Guatemala? El Salvador?)

: Uhh, yeah (snicker, snicker)sure. Whatever you say...

See., thsi is what gets my goat. I provide facts and you don't ahev the courtesy to acknowledge them. I didn't deny the death toll in Hungary after teh '56 invasion, did I/ Though on secodn thought, amybe I should.

:: By the way, when you say Capitalist, I always assume that we're talking about Capitalism and a Democratic Republican form of government, individual liberty, right of private ownership, courts to uphold the laws, things like that. I hope you understand my insistance that this is the Capitalism that I'm rooting for, not whatever it is they have in El Salvador, et al.

Is private ownership compatible with democracy? How can it be, given that capitalism is predicated on hierarchy,a nd democracy on equality? 'democratic capitalism' is an oxymoron. And by the way, would you consider Kaiser Wilhelm's Germany capitalist? They killed 80% of the Herero, remember. They were known as the 'Junker-Capitalist' regime. What about 'civilized' Belgium? They killed 10 million people in the Congo, without the benefit of modern technology. What about the British at Amritsar? What about the French in Algeria (not that the FLN was great, but still...) What about the US in Vietnam , killing 3 million people? And what about all the famines caused by teh capitalist system, headquartered in the US?

By teh way, how come you are fere to define capitalism so as to only incldue the countries you like, but I can't define communsim in the same way?

: : : : 3) cares so little for the truth that he still has not recognized any of teh numerous examples of socialist / communist democracy and capitalists tyranny that were provided for him,

: See above.

: : : Sorry old chap, Zimbabwe is a dud.
: : : To me the easiest way to prove what you are saying is to offer the citizens of those success stories you point to an offer to go to any Western country.

: : They do. Tehy're free to migrate, freer than citizens of most capiatlsit countries sucha s Guatemala or El Salvador, who are actively prevented from entering this country. If capitalism is so great, hwo coem we get so many Guatemalan refiugees?

: Maybe because what they practice there isn't Capitalism. See above.

Again- why is China socialist, but El Salvador was not capitalist? Hell, they were SO capitalist that even the US had to pressure them t nationalize a few banks.

: : :
: : : : 4) quoted a Nazi approvingly and said that he had some good points.

: : : Not sure here, what quote? What Nazi? Von Braun was a Nazi and he did have some good points.

: : Fred Rundle, of course? Don't you ever read what otehr epopel say? oh, i forgot, you're a capitalist, capitalists don't believe in free speech and free debate.

: Well, thanx for the compliment, but who the hell is Fred Rundle, and what did he say that I approved of?

The ANC post, if you remember? Written by a confessed Nazi?

: :
: : : : Given all that I think that such a guy is eminently worthy of Lark's criticism.

: LOL! Lark criticizes everybody!

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