- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Its called Norman.

Posted by: Red Deathy ( Socialist party, UK ) on March 24, 1999 at 15:11:13:

In Reply to: It's called marginal analysis posted by Joel Jacobson on March 24, 1999 at 11:30:24:

: Again the issue of competition is completely turned on its head. No money-bags man wins a competition, except marginally. If he puts in a million dollars to gain $100 then he has a very poor rate of return on capital. Unlike sports, in business I only gain if I finish with an amount higher than I expend. For instance, if I gross negative $20 while you gross negative $30 then we have both lost, regardless of the fact that you have lost more than me. A company that spends $25,000 to take my $5,000 has lost even though they've taken my house.

OK, This was gonna be my response to teh 'Supply and Demand' Debate further down the page, I didn't bother coz it was too old.

Classical Supply and demand states:

That Price is a function of the ratio of available commodity units (quantity) to absolute demand (quantity).

Further (and this is your point about marginal whatevers, and what you called supply and demand) demand can be split by quality into satsified and unatsified demand. The determination of this being:
(use value + (Total Exchangeable Wealth (quality) / Quality of Commdoity (Exchange value) ), or 'do I want it (and how much?)?' and 'Can I afford it?'

Now, if you're sharp you may notice that My quality fo demand can revert back into quantity, in that I can afford more of the products.
(BTW- before I launch into an example, I should note that The Available Produce here represents the socially possible quanity of production, which can rise at a later stage, btu for now, I'llkeep it constant).

Now, here runs an example:
There are 100 people, all of whom want/need X- of which there are fifty available at average quality. So only 50 can be satisfied at average quality. But 'A-ha!', here comes JoelCorp. JoelCorp is rich, and has effective quality of demand for 11X- or the qualitative equivillent (so 1X at 11xQuality, or 11Q) (effectively JoelCorp becomes an extra eleven people, amking total supply 50/111, thus driving the price up, but he cans till afford 11- also remember, that 1X at 11Q is still a subtraction from the total pool of social production). a further 19 people can afford to buy X at average quality (at the Post-JoelCorp price). Finally, this leaves 80 people, 60 of whome can afford only one third of the quality (0.3Q). Leaving 20 people utterly unsatsified.

Now, this becomes clear, production goes towards the EFFECTIVE demand, and this applies for all commodities, including violence.

If our trade union hero is one of the thirty with 0.3 cover by a security firm, he is probably protected from muggers, burgalars, stalkers, but not from armoured SWAT teams- the RISK is not worth it for his security firm. JoelCorp's Security cover, of course, runs to Hiring a SWAT team.

For JoelCorp, smashing the union has untollable invisible financial gains. Also, the marginal costs would be very little- JoelCorp has the SWAT team on retainer, they send them round, Jim's cover simply refuses to intervene being utterly outmatched, game over.

: 1) I suspect that if a person was acting in such an anti-social manner as you describe, for no particular reason, then the community would institute coercive action so that the whole would be better off. (values are based on opinions)

I have good reason, to protect my monopoly, I can do anything I want with my money. its fair businesss competition, and besides, wheres the profit for you? Surely your communal values stretch only as far as your wallet?

: 2) In a society of commerce, based on the profit motive, people who rise are those who are trustworthy and, thus, social. I would consider it highly unlikely that such a person would obtain property and then go do something like this. At any rate less likely than in comparison to the anti-social behavior exhibited through our current political system.

But its competition, I might feel In need to do this to stay profitable. you can't back a fundamentally unsociable system up by appealing to social values- people who rise woiuld be teh ruthless sharks who can backstab better than most.

: Quality for different quanitities. A disgruntled person with a pipe bomb can do more damage than a company could make up through military action. Like I said earlier war is the hell of it and would probably be very scarce. If SAS is paid $10,000 and wipes out AssInd but incurs $40,000 worth of damages then SAS has "won" but really lost. Please, re-assess you definition of 'competition' and you'll see what I'm talking about.

But they wouldn't even need to fight, AssInd would simply backdown, having more (everything) to lose, the SAS could p[ut it about that they could wipe out AssInd with just the cost of the bullets- teh truth fo teh matter is hard to tell, and not important, they'd back down. Plus a hellicopter Gunship verus a few Good Old boys with Shotguns would not incur significant losses nor risk for teh SAS. you depend utterly on a rough equality in armed force.

And even yet, the SAS would be covered by their client- what if the gains to their client outwayed the $50,000 they paid to the SAS (AssInd was in the way of a good Oil field, etc.)

Or even yet, what about Cheap'n'Nasty Inc. Who hire the scum of teh Earth, and are prepared to let them die their pointless pyschotioc deaths, they are prepared to take the risk, and thus win the Mexican standoff- perhaps with out a shot being fired. M.A.D relies on equity of risk and equity of quality, and that can't be guaranteed.

: These are instruments of large-scale conflicts and would have much more limited usage in the conflicts we're refering to. Handguns and automatics would probably be the staple. And, again, a $10,000 force could stand-off a $40,000 force per the above analysis.

But since everyone's using hanfdguns, why not up the Ante, buy a Hellicopter Gunship, and win hands down. Cheap at half the price.

: 1) times have changed, especially with the wide availablity of information.
: 2) Medieval mercenaries had pikes and halbards which were expensive to train with, create, and maintain. A simple handgun can be used immediately and effectively w/ little training.

They still might come back and bite you on the bum.

: The first part was answered by my prior post already; Jim loses everything unless he fulfills his contract. Second, such strike missions would be massively expensive as they would be the most hazardous jobs on the market; such teams, as evidenced by your own post would, be offensive in nature and highly dangerous for the soldiers. I'm guessing that such teams would cost more for one mission than a whole security agency for a whole year. What I really suspect is taht they would exist solely to eliminate individual's who had personally pissed off someone else (another reason to behave socially) and not some massive invasion force.

Pissed someone off- like Union leaders? And who woudl have access to such teams? Only the very rich. you fail to address quality differential still.

: This was really answered by my prior post but I'll clarify. If we're talking profit here then 4 to 1 odds is probably enough to deter violence. And, further, let's say Bob has JoelCorp, SethCorp, AbeCorp & JohnCorp. JoelCorp asks Bob to go to war with Jim. Well, if Bob exhibits a tendancy to go to war and continually use violence for JoelCorp then courts in the area will recognize this and develop a pregidous against Bob. Most likely, the other corporations would drop Bob and go with another agency if they felt Bob was acting against their best interests by engaging in unjust behavior. It's actually in Bob's interest to break the contract with JoelCorp and go with the peaceful corporations. And if you look at what happens today the poor need protection from the poor. If the poor in an anarcho-capitalists society have little money then what's the motive for large-scale crime? Small blocks would probably get together collectively and organize a small 3-person force pertaining to particular people. They would protect against the only one's with interest in the poor, petty criminals.

Except Rich people may want them to move out for develoment, for political or for other reasons. But basically you have just admitted the injustice of this system, cheers.

: Let's put the emotive references to 'preatorian guard' aside, shall we?

What's emotive about Praetorian Guard, its an accurate description of an elite personal guard. Does it mean something else in yankland?

: The economic anlysis takes place regardless of the economic products indiscussion. If an in-house security force is more efficient then the company will maintain one. If not, they'll outsource. It's no difference then a maintenance issue (I just realized it Deathy, you're under the mystical spell of "coercion" too aren't you). Working for a security force where the company sent its soldiers on missions would drive wages through the roof. If a company "won" $10,000 and incurred $40,000 in damages then, in reality, they have lost. Potential soldier-employees would seek employment elsewhere or ask for massively inflated wages.

But I could hire from teh very poor, as connaon fodder, or I could maintain a persona;l elite, if I had such uses. Also i could find wasting money on military might useful publicty wise, if I want to cow some peopel, or again, if i felt teh gains were worth it....

: True. Halleluia!!! You understand competition, marginal revenue and marginal cost. The mafia provide law (the drug trade) where currently there is none. Despite the rage against druge dealers economic analysis show they behave just like entrepreneurs. Legalize drugs!!! and bye-bye mafia.

Ooooh, ICI could produce more heroin than you could shake a stick at, prices would fall out of the market. Frankly I don't wanna live in a world ruled by the mafia, cheers. And I think most folks wouldn't.

: Which are functions of a globe darkened by the spectre of politics.

Erm, any copr worth its salt would have a PR team, if they felt the gains were worth it, Black-Ops would be an option, and plausible deniability would protect them from Market ramifications.

: And business is the province of everyone.

No, I meant third party businesses, personal armed groups would not be as subject to market forces, and could incur losses in themselves, but still bring an overall profit to their sponsor. Your whole case rests on the unproffitability of violnce for teh military folk, remove that problem...

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