- Capitalism and Alternatives -

'Why would MDG want to punish success?'

Posted by: Henry on January 21, 19100 at 11:56:43:

In Reply to: You rang? posted by MDG on January 20, 19100 at 17:58:52:

: [snip]

: : Hey, MDG! If you had a billion dollars, you could put it in a risk-free CD account in a bank and earn 5 percent interest, and it would make $50 million a year! (Therefore, your wage-limmit $5 million a year would seize 90% of a billionaires earnings. What do you think Ted Turner,the $7 billionaire, would have his talking heads at CNN say about you taking all that?)

: He'd have his talking heads say, "Under the new maximum wage, money will now be available for all our childrens' educations! All the uninusured will now have health insurance! We can finally clean up the environment. A new day has dawned in America, thanks to the brilliance of that humble thinker, MDG! Let us all sing his praises! Hail, MDG, Hail, MDG, Hail, MDG!"

Come to think of it, maybe HE would say that. I know nothing of him personally, so I have no idea as to his inclinations. But you can be sure that that "Hail MDG!" wouldn't be the chorus ringing throughout the nation. No, it would be more like "Why would MDG want to punish success?" and "MDG is a power-hungry tyrant who engineered the plan which took our property away!"

And equitable distribution of wealth is the capitalists' nightmare, just like a real free-market is. More money in more people's pockets--together with more services such as healthcare and child-care--would give workers more power. That is, the better the cushion between them and poverty, the easier it would be for them to strike more often and for longer periods of time.

Capitalists aren't by definition mean horrible people. They're not caricatures like Scrooge sitting in their rooms counting their money devising ways to screw workers and destroy the planet.I know some capitalists personally and they're not this way at all. (I mean real capitalists--people that own companies--not the "hooray-for-the-system" yahoos.)

Of course, I have fundamental differences with them, but this doesn't mean that their evil people, and Ted Turner could fit into this category. The difference, though, is whom capitalists will ultimately serve. A good business person is responsible to his/her investors only, and if that means a reduction in thousands of workers, then that's the way it will have to be.

Maybe the capitalist won't give a shit. He'll just say "screw 'em" and go around the world on his yacht. Or maybe he'll be of a broader, philosophical outlook and he'll think to himself, "You know, even from a bottom-line perspective, a whole underclass of desperate, angry people could be a cause for concern."

He could even be a bleeding heart liberal and make a speech telling the workers how sorry he is! (I worked for a guy who did this once, when his bankruptcy ruling came back and the judge ordered a reduction in employees and no more health care for any workers in the shop.)

The point is, the capitalists can have all of these reactions but they still can't DO anything about it. The imperatives of capitalism just won't let them.

In rare cases some people get sick and tired of the whole scene. They quit and someone else replaces them. These conscience-stricken capitalists then have an option which none of us do-- sitting at a ranch and pursuing their hobbies of sailing or flying.

The point is, capitalists could be the nicest, most convivial most rational people you'd ever want to meet personally, but it's the system which is by nature exploitive.

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