- Capitalism and Alternatives -

the private sector isnt inherently democratic

Posted by: Lark on November 08, 1999 at 16:04:00:

In Reply to: remarkable argument posted by Gee on November 08, 1999 at 10:43:13:

: Your post is a remarkable argument for seperation of state and economic activity too, read via the lens of seperation of state and science. You argued your points very well.

I dont think so but then I consider the state and "economic activity" to equally terrible, the choice isnt between public or privately owned command economies it's about the control each and everyone can exercise over their own lives, through free time etc. and whatever is most conducive to this.

: : Look, Barry, right now I'm writing a short story about an evil capitalist. Suppose I live in a community where no one else is interested in this use of my time, and they don't want me to work at this.

: Spot on ! Write your novel, you dont have to ask other poeples permisssion, just as other people will not be requried to read it! A 100% control over economic activity essentially means 100% control over *you* as your every second exists at the behest of the 'state' and any free time is offered to you as a trip to town may have been offered to a slave.

Clever spin on that Gee but if you where to take the individualist stance, which is essentially anti-social/sharing/inter-related, why would you be writting a book? Why would you wish to share your opinions whatever in a book with anyone else if you where so individualistic? Writting a book is a classic example of social production carried out by the individual and the dependency of the individual upon others.

: : It would, I think be very difficult to run science in a centralized, 'social' manner.

: It would Nikhil, as would running productive organisations for similar reasons.

However does planning have to be a matter of complete centralisation? No it doesnt as instances in Cuba or Yugoslavia during the workers councils phase demonstrated (not that I find that ideal or anything).

Besides look at the huge centralisation involved in the Privately owned Command Economy run by Gates and Murdoch etc. does it cause it to be disatisfying or collapse?

: : But when it comes to testing out ideas, designing experiments, which is teh meat and bones of science, to socialise the whole enterprise would be, I think, countreproductive. You'd need a committe representing the whole society to preside over teh decision of how many controls to use in an experiment. To do this would slow science down.

: Wouldnt it skew science into being *wrong* aswell? when the scientists proposed test, worked out by the scientists because she knows what she is doing, is altered by the votes of all these external people?

I dont know about this.

: The same with producing organisations - designing products and production methods, allocating resources to the process would all be slowed down if subject to centralised control and voting by anyone who turns up. More over the resultant organisation would be inefficient (wrong) if so operated for the same reasons the experiment would be. I hope you can see this - its isnt some trick I am playing on you.

But Gee the private sector isnt inherently democratic, if I go to the super store and they dont have what I want and I go around them all and they dont have what I want they dont have to supply it, on the scale of cost benefit the needs or whims of me dont count at all. The centralisation etc. you talk about is endemic in the market, corporates or large companies are like miniature states governed by dictators who may or may not be despotic to consumers or workers as the mood takes them.

: : Yes! Science is devoted to teh pursuit of objective truth, not to teh bolstering of elite OR working class power.

: Excellent.

I still dont see how this bolsters your argument, the proclaimation of the need of independence in decision making and resource allocation etc. is as indictive of capitalism as state socialism.

: : That is what allows us to say that Cyril Burt's hereditarianism was objectively false AS WELL AS immoral.Not only was hsi statement taht IQ is 80% inherited copmpletely immoral, but it was also teh product of a baldfaced fraud. he made up the sets of twins he used in his head.

: This is significant : Isnt the above immoral *because* it is a fraud, not just aswell as?

I think NJ considers the content of the argument as wrong not just it's empirical legitimicy.

Might respond to the rest later.

Follow Ups:

The Debating Room Post a Followup