- Capitalism and Alternatives -

Society has a greater capacity than the individual.

Posted by: Lark on October 28, 1999 at 15:01:14:

In Reply to: Good idea! posted by Gee on October 26, 1999 at 18:15:04:

: I think youre right when you are under the cosh of an immediate authoritarian oppression - but in know way is that analagous with the west.

Now that just depends, I'd consider the 1970's and 1980's a period of time when internationally people took up arms against the state, or at least tried to organise freely against the states interests (that includes the interests of the states paymaster like Ford). In these circumstances "liberal democracies" demonstrated that there was very little to seperate them from despotism.

Civil rights marches gunned down by commando units in Chile by Phinochet, Civil rights marches gunned down by Thatcher in Derry in Northern Ireland.

Organising freely in a trade union restricted and abolished in Chile by Phinocet with force of arms, the same happened in Britain under Thatcher.

I could go on but I think you get the gist govner, anyway I'm surprised that sincere libertarians like yourself dont seize upon this as an example of elective despotism.

: : : Laissez faire and regime are contradictions in terms. where are the laissez faire countries anyway?

: : Britain under Thatcher, US under Regan, Chile under Pinochet.

: not one, not one, not one.

I'm afraid so Gee or at least you see what happens when your ideology translates into practice, not a pretty sight is it? The question maybe shouldnt be whether not people are going to accept socialism but when is capitalism going to leave them alone to live their lives.

: : Britain under Thatcher, US under Regan, Chile under Pinochet.

: So they werent laissez faire, the were militarists. ok maybe we can move from there.

You get laissez faire militarists just the same as you get socialist militarists Gee, now people who like to preserve the civil libertarian dimension of both ideologies see the very apparent contradiction but it doesnt prevent these distortions becoming the real world examples of "Laissez faire" or "socialism".

: : How strange? I was trying to demonstrate that I consider the severity of the problem such that I can't change it by limiting my actions to changes in my behaviour and altruism.

: But thats all it is when it boild down to it - individuals behaving. Thats all any 'collective' action can be.

I cant agree I'm afraid there are structural factors which contribute to determining peoples behaviour.

: : Socialism isnt altruism, neither is it voluntary poverty, remember my stockmarket socialist friends?

: I thought you doubted their socialism?

Well prompted by yourself, you remember you said would the really qualify as socialists?, I must say I did wonder but then I decided that I cant judge their sincerity and what criteria would I use? If it's regualtion then they support it as much as say george soros if it's tax for the sake of tax then they wouldn't, liberal socialists but socialists all the same.

: : :I thought you liked Proudhon?

: : Yes I do. So did Marx.

: I'm pretty sure I read Stoller saying Marx repudiated Proudhon? Cant find th post though.

Stroller no doubt did. You see Proudhon was a Socialist, the man said property was theft but then he said wait a minute Communism is impossible and not a great idea even if it wasnt, a view I'm sympathetic with.

: : The individual has a responsibility, it is just one that differs from social responsibility.

: But they must amount to the same thing - 'society' cannot act without individuals acting.

True but Society has a greater capacity than the individual.

: : I think I've outlined that above. You know we, the regular debators, should all form a club or something.

: Sure! Good Idea

It'd be a lot better than the "Capitalism is evil because people starve and it's not fair" or "Hitler, Stalin, Mao that's all socialism" debators, they are right and agrivating.

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