- Capitalism and Alternatives -

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Posted by: Red Deathy ( Socialist Party, UK ) on August 09, 1999 at 16:06:28:

In Reply to: Top Deck posted by Gee on August 09, 1999 at 14:41:59:

: They are innocent until proven guilty. Many murders are commited with DIY tools every year. I cannot hold them off from buying or making tools in fear of being assualted by one no more than I could hold off ice cream makers from producing ice creams as they choose to for fear that one of them might be poisonous.

You're straying from the point, you have an interest in ensuring their safety.

: The consequence of any lack of responsibility in making a claim would be the burden of all others, the claimant could waste and make misery whilst 'sharing' the consequence with all others.

Thats for everyone to decide and value.

: Save up metals and concrete for the making of a bridge - ruined by endless claims for metal and concrete modern art or garden statues. the people who intend to make the bridge have their productive effort curtailed because metal and concrete are being allocated to the useless. you complain of this in capitalism - the same is just as possible in socialism.

It is possible, but if people agreed they actually wanted a bridge, they would have to behave so as to make it possible.

: It is the power that gets them the material benefits of being in charge - which is to say, to control the use of 'collective' resource.

But everyone has that anyway, there would and could be no material gain, unless they wrecked the system as they find it- a difficult task.

: There is a huge philosophical gulf between saying gravity is not obvjectively real, and saying that we humans cannot 'know' it in an objective sense, being subject. A person incapable of knowing gravity at all is not floating. A person unable to see a brick flying toward him suffers the same consequence as one who has understood every law of physics and medical science thus far known to man and made very accurate predictions about the consequences. To undertake the latter excercise is rational - its testable and observable - the rationality of the thought is borne out by what is. To say its all subjective and (if consistent) predict random or no events is borne out as wrong by reality.

However, where the 'object' of study is humans, the object of study is the subject, which is, erm, subjective, always.

: Not if you call 'live' a standard (even if its a reductionist as reading a few medical measures) and in accepting indivual differences name a set of criteria suitable for the vast majority of mankind and leave room to consider unusual cases (very sick folk etc) by theirnown characteristics.

But 'live' is a value judgement, its not an objective criteion. And any 'majority of mankind' would be an abstraction that probably wouldn't fit most people exactly.

: To leave it to whim is to say that a man who needs a yacht is as deserving as the man who needs water.

No, you're confusing the lack of objective standards with a lack of value hierarchy, which is subjective- we would have to have values, yes, but they would have to be based on discussion, and debate, and ever changing.

: You accept the objective standard of 'need' being filled in this case with a nutritional measure.

No, the point was that we can't just pin it down to need, that the difference between the egg and meat is one of needs- values/preferences, etc.

: Imagine now that an egg is superior nutrition by measures of nutition required by a human to be alive. Debating it does not change the nature of the egg, nor the nature of mankind.

DEbating doesn't change that, but it would perhaps change someones dislike for eggs, or someone elses liking for them- alive has to be defined- that is a subjective value judgement.

: Now take it a stage further. he doesnt want to make toys for person A but does want to make them for person B.

He's a wanker then, if he's using social reources to produce anything, he must allow them to be socially used and available, unless he's working solely for personal favours.

: And with that you accept the many evils that might be 'wanted' by poeple, or less dramatically the many second rate generators that might be selected on the basis of producer popularity etc. Even that a great many people might want to keep property privately.

They may want evil things, but I think the point is that I trust myself, and if I turust myself, I see no reason not to trust others.

: by considering the nature of mankind you have reasoned that he cannot eat that much. It is objectively demonstrable (by a 'blaaaargh' sound) and the standard is reality.

Yes, but someone might well be able of eating a hundred jars,a nd some people I know would be killed by less than one. So there is no objective peanut butter standard, beyond that subjectively known by each.
: : The fact that the vast majority won't let them, and they won't want to because of their cultural leanings and the laack of perceptable gain.

: fact? Hope.

: : Then if they seemed OK I'm in teh clear, but if they came in roaring drunk and I sold them a car- intent is not an issue, I just have to show reasonable care.

: So selling cigarettes to poeple who enjoy smoking and are willing to take the consequences (which for 30 years have been well understood and massively publicised) is fine.

: : It is very difficult, and as they say, tehre is no such thing as an ex addict- its made more difficult by a culture of smoking (i.e. all your friends do), and with an advertising industry encouraging it.

: Then its difficult. Still up to you.

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