- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Zeroing in

Posted by: Samuel Day Fassbinder ( Citizens for Mustard Greens, USA ) on July 09, 1999 at 12:33:24:

In Reply to: quence posted by Gee on July 08, 1999 at 17:35:11:

: : SDF: Just as there is no natural law requiring cultures to survive,

: Did I say that a law suggests cultures must have comparative advantage to survive

SDF: It's not crucial to my argument whether you did or didn't, I say no such "natural law" exists.

: or that comparative advantage can enable one group to survive over another and that in those circumstances it is of benefit to the group in question, that in our society children receiving superior education etc do better compared to others and that parents not wishing to give that up are quite understandable

SDF: This is a run-on sentence. Please rewrite for understandability.

: : desiring survival may be a "natural" urge, but this is hardly of any consequence when one is enculturated.

: Just because a person can be "enculturated" to happily accept death does not mean that in order to survive such things as comparative advantage are not of benefit to survival or prosperting.

SDF: In some cultures and some societies, "comparative advantage" might produce advantages for some people, notably in capitalist societies characterized by artificial states of "scarcity" and widespread deprivation, such as, say, present-day Brazil. But, within these societies, it would be so only for SOME forms of competition, forms where co-operation to overcome the survival obstacles of the group are unsuccessful. Assuming that "comparative advantage" is necessary for survival in some objective sense is to confuse the CULTURE of such societies as are characterized by such artificial "scarcity" with NATURE. "Comparative advantage," in short, is CULTURALLY BOUND. Assuming it's necessary for everyone to pursue it, in all cultures, amounts to a rather pathetic assessment of the potentials of human culture.

: the above all assumes that the person/s has as a goal their and their childrens survival and prosperity. "enculturing" that away does not cause things which benefit those goals to become invalid in pursuit of those goals

SDF: "Individual goals" and "childrens survival and prosperity" and "validity" are PRODUCTS of culture. Whether something is "valid" or "invalid" is a culture-specific judgment. Judgments can be true or false or probable or what have you, they're culturally-specific nonetheless.

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