- Capitalism and Alternatives -


Posted by: Nikhil Jaikumar ( DSA, MA, USA ) on July 26, 1999 at 17:38:20:

In Reply to: I will agree that genuine capitalism is destined to be a failure posted by Jason on July 22, 1999 at 17:32:23:

: No poverty? Yes, that sounds very sweet and if the world were perfect, there never would have been poverty, illness, or death. Unfortunately, (welcome to earth!) life ain't fair and some people can be forced into unfortunate economic situations. Is it any wonder, however, that despite the risk of falling into poverty, citizens of socialists nations (ahem... CUBA!) will practically kill themselves to gain one chance to better their situation in America?

you've repeated teh fallacy about coitizens of socialist counrties making a rush to flee to America, which I think deserves a response.

1) every revolution produces refugees. The American Revolution produced more political and economic refugees, as a % of population, than did teh Communist revolution in Vietnam. Many of these were liberals, escaped slaves, etc. So much for the innate inferiority of Communsit regimes or revolutions.

2) people flee fom capitalist regimes, too. 250,000 fled from capitalist Togo into socialist Ghana. 42,000 fled from South-West Africa (a colony of ultra-capitalist South Africa) into soicialist Angola or Zambia. Plenty of Vietnamese refugees escaped to China; so much for trying to avoid "socialism". Guatemala, El Salvador and Chile, all run by capitalist right-wing regimes, produced a flood of refugees.

3) The US discriminatory immigration policy made it difficult for refuegges escaping capitalist dictatorships to fidn refuge in the United States. While Cubans and Vietnamese were welcomed with open arms, refugees fleeing far worse genocides in Guatemala or El Salvador were turned away at teh door and sent back to enjoy the death squads.

4) In general, the wealthy classes tend to suffer mroe from leftist revolutions, while the poor suffer under caopitalist regimes. The wealthy classes have more mnoney, education and contacts, and thus fidn it easier to emigrate than the poor who are being victimized in El Salvador or Brazil.

:I think it would be more correct to say that under socialism, there are no rich or poor because everybody is poor.

Not accurate at all. Fisrt of all, what do you mean by "poor"? If you measuer by standard-of-living, socialist nations invariably have ahigher standard-of-living than similarly placed capitalist ones. (Cuba is the higehst in latin America, kerala the highets in India, etc.) If you mean in terms of econbomic growth, then Nicaragua and Burkian Faso both far outpaced tehir capitalist neighbors. Finally, Scandinavia is semi-socialist, and they ahve teh highets stnadard of living in teh world- I'd hardly call them poor.
: : But what of Billionaires? And Thats still a tiny number compared to the people who stay on average or below means. there are more rags to rags than rags to riches stories- capitalism cannot benefit the majority of people.

: In the long run, capitalism does benefit the majority, if not all, of the people. Think about the standard of living your parents or grandparents lived under when they were young. As capitalism creates more wealth for the country it increases the standard of living. Think about how much better off your children or grandchildren will be. There will still be poverty, but few of America's poor are forced into the downright inhumane conditions that the far more numerous poor of third-world nations must live under.

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