- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Footnoting away

Posted by: Samuel Day Fassbinder ( Citizens for Mustard Greens, USA ) on December 16, 1999 at 16:32:18:

In Reply to: Just a minor question, SDF posted by Nikhil Jaikumar on December 16, 1999 at 10:54:32:

: : SDF: Oh, OK. So that's the definition of "socialist" you subscribe to. Does sound an awful lot like Sweden to me.

: Yes. Sweden does have 90% state ownership, don't they. Damn, how could I have forgotten. How could I have forgotten all the railroads in Sweden built with volunter labor. damn stupid of me. Also, Sweden is not exactly a model I would be criticizing. Sweden was neutral in the Cold War, they're hardly an American stooge. And the Swedes certainly seem to like what they've got.

SDF: Did I say I was attacking the Swedish model? I think it would be great if every country demanded the Swedish way of life, in the halls of the IMF and the World Bank, tomorrow. Social democracy for all, now!

: SDF, money existed for thousands of years, in all kinds of societies, befroe capitalism entered on the scene. In traditional Africa, money existed, but the societies as a whole were freqiuently best described as traditional communism. If your dire scenario is correct, how do you explain this?

SDF: Preindustrial societies had hoarders, but they were nothing compared with those who today harvest the process of capital accumulation under industrial capitalism. Money does not behave today as it did under preindustrial conditions.

: Seriously, if Russia had not wasted tons of money building up a nuclear arsenal, had not bled themselves dry subsidizing places like Afghanistan and Ethiopia, had not sent satellites into space, had done a better job of wiping out corruption and a better job appealing to people with the necessity of working for the greater glory fo socialism, and if they had been democratically responsive to teh peopel as a true communsit state should, don't you think they would still exist right now? If the CIA hadn't meddled,don't you think that Allende and Ortega would still eb in power now?I always ask this of the Trots, and I have yet to hear an answer.

SDF: If the Soviets had ABOLISHED money, would they be Thatcherists today?

: : See what I'm trying to untangle? Anyone can call him or herself a socialist. What does it have to do with bringing socialism to the planet?

: yes, everyone calls themselves a socialist. So what makes one person's definition teh definitive one? Why is your definition superior to mine, or Barry's superior to Lark's?

SDF: Socialism: public, DEMOCRATIC control of the means of production.
Social democracy: capitalist democracy with guarantees for all.


: : I have to believe the same pressure was on Carter, thus his support for the Shah etc.

: Do you think you could have done better? If not, then who are you comparing him to? Some perfect Ideal Man? plato's dream?

SDF: Did I say I COULD do better? Why in hell would I want to lead a bourgeois democracy?

: : Look, I can't bring myself to defend "good Trilateralists". This is like praising the "good cop" in the "good cop-bad cop" routine typically used to extract confessions out of political prisoners, only in this case what's being extracted from the working class is consent for the New World Order.

: No, I definitely beleive that soem cops are good and others are bad. i have to laugh when I hear peopel criticize policemen as a class. Classes are made up of individuals, after all, which may be good or bad.

SDF: To continue the metaphor: the good cop and the bad cop may be different people, but they might have the same police chief.

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