- Capitalism and Alternatives -

profit itself is a form of pillage

Posted by: Nikhil Jaikumar ( DSA, MA, USA ) on December 27, 1999 at 13:41:41:

In Reply to: Exactly Right posted by Stuart Gort on December 25, 1999 at 12:29:17:

: That's exactly right. I've been saying it for years in as many different ways as I can. Capitalism has afforded such idealists as Barry and SDF an opportunity to exist at all.

No, if you give Stoller's posts another look he makes a good case that the economically straitened circumstances engendered by capitalism make teh working class less charitablke and idealistic. If your statement is true, then why is it that the relatively wealthy American workers are relatively un-socialist, while the much poorer workers in places like India are much more favorable to communism. Students in America are far less favorable to revolution than students in places like France, Mexico and Korea. Much as conservatives like to talk about college campuses beinga hotbed of radicalism, have you looked at polls recently? some shocking number of students are conservative.

:Wealth is created by those who dig stuff out of the ground and make it into something useful.

There is, however, a limit to what you can do; you can't create natural resources out of whole cloth, nor can you substitute indefinitely.

:Capitalism motivates people to do that.

No, because if you know that whatever you make is going to go to the profit of your employer, you are not going to be motivated to work hard- why SHOUDL you work to line teh bosses' pockets? To say that capitalism motivates, you would nbeed to run a controlled comparison with another system practiced under teh same circumstances, enedless to say that hasn;t been done.

:Socialism and every other redistributionist philosophy exist to pillage that wealth and control it.

'Pillage'? Nice unbiased terminology here, isn't it? In fact, profit itself is a form of pillage, because it's extracting a portion of teh workers' fair share from those who deserve it. Socialism is merely giving people what they deserve.

:Problem is, stuff stops getting dug out of the ground under socialism and economic systems collapse when that happens.

Nicaragua had the fastest growth rate in the Americas* until US terrorism intimidated them into accepting a right-wing regime; since then, their economy has gone down the tubes. Burkina FAso did a pretty good job of mobilizing people to work at volunteer labor; so much for the 'incentive' argument. Pace Frenchy, DonS, and whoever else promulgated this argument, the Communist states in India don't receive subsidies, quite the contrary; out of spite, the Central Government has historically sucked in moeny from teh communist states and has paid tehm LESS than the more capitalistic states.

:No intellectual exercise is going to change human nature which must change from self serving to alltruistic in order for socialism to flourish.

But both self-interest and altruism are part of any highly evolved species, humanity included. If there was no possibility of humans being altruistic, then what was the point of Christianity promoting an ethic of brotherhood.

: These guys simply ignore reality.

: Stuart Gort

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