TᵢG

The Threat of 'Socialism'

  
By:  TᵢG  •  Politics  •  3 weeks ago  •  298 comments

The Threat of 'Socialism'

Whereas socialist policies such as the Green New Deal and socialized medicine would— ...

Senator Daines has submitted a resolution to ban ' socialism ' in the USA.   In effect, this resolution is stating that any policy that can be labeled ' socialism ' is a threat.


It is one thing for people to talk loosely about a term, but when a self-contradicting meme becomes the subject of a proposed resolution it is difficult to suspend disbelief that many of our elected officials are incompetent.





III

116th CONGRESS


1st Session


S. RES. 289


IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES


July 29, 2019


Mr. Daines   submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the   Committee on the Judiciary


RESOLUTION


Expressing the sense of the Senate that socialism poses a significant threat to freedom, liberty, and economic prosperity.

Whereas Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines socialism as—


(1)  any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods; and
(2)  a system of society or group living in which there is no private property;

The resolution initially establishes that 'socialism' is that defined by Merriam-Webster.   Okay, so we have the word 'socialism' defined in basic terms as it is commonly used.   That is what dictionaries do.


The first problem is the 'government ownership ' aspect.   That immediately contradicts Marxism and implicitly tags statist approaches with the former USSR as the exemplar.   But, that is how the senator wants to define socialism, so at this point he has defined it as a system where either the people (as a collective) or the state (a minority consisting of officials) controls the productive resources of society (the means of production and distribution of goods).


Continuing on ...


Whereas socialism and the policies advocated by self-described democratic socialists have an underlying historical connection to the Marxist theory;

Seriously?   This basically refers to the collective policies of anyone who self-references as a 'democratic socialist'.   Thus if Bernie Sanders advocates a policy as 'socialism' (such as worker-owned businesses or making it easier for kids to get college degrees), this resolution would deem it ipso facto 'socialism' and reject it.   


Whereas history has witnessed countless failed Marxist-inspired regimes;

True.   The states who historically claim to be 'socialist' all do indeed also claim to be inspired by Marx.  Being 'inspired by' Marx does not say anything about the system.   Which part of Marx' volumes of work are they inspired by?   Are they inspired by the ultimate goal of economic utopia?   Are they inspired by economic power by the people?   Something else?   


Whereas, because of the perverse incentives and inherent flaws of the Marxist theory, socialism inevitably leads to societal rot, resulting in devastation, economic poverty, and destruction;

This is just name-calling.   Name the perverse incentives and the inherent flaws.   Some call China socialist;  Red China certainly was 'inspired by' Marx since they were 'inspired by' Leninism who was in turn 'inspired by' Marx.   So is everything in the Chinese system perverse and flawed?    Some call the Nordic states socialism (Bernie Sanders for example).   They all are based on social democracy which was based on the Fabian movement which was 'inspired by' Marx.   All perverse and flawed?


Whereas prominent elected officials in the Senate and the House of Representatives are self-described socialists and espouse socialist proposals;

Why does it matter if they self-describe as 'socialists'?   Especially since most of what they advocate is social democracy (and the USA is already a weak social democracy).



Whereas socialist policies such as the Green New Deal and socialized medicine would— (1)  eliminate the private property rights of all people of the United States; and (2)  force taxpayers to pay trillions of dollars to implement;

Immediately, ' socialized medicine ' is not socialism.   It is redistribution of wealth.   It can be properly labeled a common policy of social democracy or a public service.   Next, ' eliminate the private property rights of all people ' means what?   What does this resolution mean by ' private property ':  the means of production and distribution (conventional meaning in the context of socialism) or personal property (as in home, car, iPhone)?   Seems like an important thing to define if it claims that legislation would remove private property rights for everyone.  Second, I think it would be great if Congress would actually put forth a bill that stops them from spending trillions of dollars of tax revenues to implement anything without a referendum from the people.   Much better than this wasting time on an ambiguous meme resolution.



Whereas Alexis de Tocqueville wrote, Democracy and socialism have nothing in common but one word, equality. But notice the difference: while democracy seeks equality in liberty, socialism seeks equality in restraint and servitude.;

Whereas Margaret Thatcher once stated, Socialist governments … always run out of other people’s money, and thus the way to prosperity is for the state to give the people more choice to spend their own money in their own way;

Quotes from dead people sans specifics (for example Thatcher was referring to redistribution of wealth when she used the term 'socialist governments') is just more vague nonsense in what is supposed to be a serious resolution of the US senate.


Whereas free-market capitalism is the greatest engine for human advancement in the history of the world, bringing more people out of poverty and into prosperity than any economic model in the history of mankind;

Capitalism thus far is indeed the best economic system that has been put into effect.


Whereas the United States is the single greatest country in the history of the world, due in large part to its system of government that secures the private property rights of all citizens through the genius of the Constitution of the United States; and

Our system of government is one of the best.   But again the senator adds on with language that does not distinguish between private property (means of production and distribution) and personal property (homes, cars, etc.).   Nothing in the CotUS states that the productive resources of the economy must be controlled by a minority.   Personal property rights are not affected by socialism.



Whereas, on February 5, 2019, in the State of the Union address, President Donald J. Trump declared—
(1)  We are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country; and
(2)  America will never be a socialist country: Now, therefore, be it

So now the senator notes that Trump declares the USA will not adopt socialism yet the term 'socialism' (as Trump used it) is undefined.   Does Trump include social democracy as 'socialism'?  How about statism?   Certainly Trump likely would include failed states such as the former USSR and Venezuela in his definition, but what about China, the U.K., France, the Nordic nations, etc.? 


That the Senate—
(1)  acknowledges that Marxism and socialism are failed ideologies;
( 2)  recognizes that socialism poses a significant threat to the freedom, liberty, and economic prosperity of all countries and people around the world;
(3)  accepts that socialism is a failed experiment of governance that inevitably ends in misery and suffering;
(4)  declares that, throughout the history, tradition, and national civic spirit of the United States, the United States has been a beacon of light shining like a lighthouse to the rest of the world, demonstrating that freedom and liberty are the surest foundation of government; and
(5)  affirms that the United States should never be a socialist country.

Great!   The USA will never be a 'socialist' country where 'socialist' is by this resolution an entirely vague term.   Tell us senator, if the SCotUS had to use just this resolution, how would that body determine if the USA has crossed any 'socialist' boundaries?   What, senator, are the defining characteristics of socialism?   Is there a level of statism (control by the state over economic and social factors) that would mean the USA is now 'socialist'?   A level of taxation?   A level of public ownership of businesses?    A level of wealth redistribution?




If you are going to put forth serious content, senator, then state what you mean by 'socialism' using specific language.   It is easy enough to do, the terms for various factors that are oft-used when identifying 'socialism' are well-known and have good definitions.   For example the resolution could have stated factors that it considers a threat such as ...



  • redistribution of wealth :    Lay out the limits on how much the US can tax private citizens.


  • expropriation of private property :   Specifically outline measures.   A good start is to ensure the state can never just seize businesses and make them state-run enterprises.   


  • excessive public services :   Define your limits on how much 'free stuff' the state can provide.


  • single payer, etc. :  Might need to be a bit more specific


  • funding support for higher education :  Same here, preclude all federal support or specify the limits.


  • command economy :   State that.


  • single party rule :  State that.


  • brutal authoritarian regime :  State that.


  • reducing everyone to the same economic level (pure egalitarian) :   State that.


  • productive resources of the economy from being owned by the people as a whole vs a minority of people :    Specify your threshold.


  • public services labeled 'socialized _____' :  State what must be true for a public service to be 'socialized' and thus ( apparently ) bad.


  • statism :  Too late.   Specify how much statism is allowed.


  • social democracy :  Too late.   Specify what percentage of revenue can go to public services and how much businesses can be taxed to fund this.  

  • ...

Montana might need to consider electing a senator who contributes more than wasting time on a vague resolution for a very confused meme.

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TᵢG
1  author  TᵢG    3 weeks ago

When will we figure out that the word 'socialism' without clear qualification is virtually meaningless?   It is one thing for people to see 'socialism' at every turn, but now we have a Senate proposal to deem anything that falls under the overloaded word 'socialism' to be a threat to the nation?

jrSmiley_98_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1  Ozzwald  replied to  TᵢG @1    3 weeks ago
When will we figure out that the word 'socialism' without clear qualification is virtually meaningless? 

But that is the entire reason the right wing uses it so much.  If people knew the definition, the right wing's fear mongering about it would end since people would realize how false their claims are.

Currently the right wing is full of supporters, to whom the word "socialism" defines all that is evil about the Democrats, while at the same time walking around with signs telling the government to not touch their Medicare.

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Jack_TX
1.1.1  Jack_TX  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    3 weeks ago
But that is the entire reason the right wing uses it so much.  If people knew the definition, the right wing's fear mongering about it would end since people would realize how false their claims are.

His point is that people use wildly differing, usually nonsensical, definitions.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @1.1.1    3 weeks ago

... and that now the Senate of the USA has put forth a resolution on a meme based on an overloaded word ('socialism').

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.3  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    3 weeks ago

Medicare is not socialized medicine, neither is Medicaid.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.4  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.3    3 weeks ago

Medicare is not socialized medicine, neither is Medicaid.

Never said they were, so not sure where you are coming from.

Medicare and Medicaid are socialized insurance.  The VA is socialized medicine.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.5  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.4    3 weeks ago

I assume you are implying that the sign in your picture is a ridiculous statement, no?

There is an importance difference between socialized medicine and social insurance programs such as Medicare.

And since Vets can see their own private doctor now, it is not completely socialized medicine.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.6  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.5    3 weeks ago

There is also an important difference between 'socialized ____' and socialism.  I make this point because it correlates with why I wrote this article. 

Socialized medicine, for example, typically means state-run healthcare.   The fact that the state is controlling an important service does not mean socialism is in effect, it only means that statism is in effect (or, if one prefers, social democracy).   Indeed, the nations which provide socialized medicine are technically social democracies (economic system of capitalism, not socialism).   If the USA adopted a single-payer, state run system that would likely be labeled 'socialized healthcare or medicine' but it would certainly not mean that the USA now has a socialist economy.

Socialism, at its core, is about the demos having democratic control over the productive resources of the economy.   

( Updated the list in the article to include this too since it is a common item that people think is 'socialism'. )

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.7  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.5    3 weeks ago
There is an importance difference between socialized medicine and social insurance programs such as Medicare.

Which has absolutely nothing to do with this conversation.....

And since Vets can see their own private doctor now, it is not completely socialized medicine.

They can see their own doctors OUTSIDE THE VA.  That detail does not say anything about the VA not being socialized medicine, your argument is convoluted.  It just means they have options outside the socialized VA doctors.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.8  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.7    3 weeks ago
Which has absolutely nothing to do with this conversation...

Then why did you bring it up in your comment?

They can see their own doctors OUTSIDE THE VA.

Yes, that is what private means as I said in my comment.  Do you not know what private means?

That detail does not say anything about the VA not being socialized medicine, your argument is convoluted.

There is no argument, I said "completely socialized medicine".  Do you also not know what completely means?

Here is a useful Google site for you..

dictionary.com

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.9  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.8    3 weeks ago
Then why did you bring it up in your comment?

I didn't, that was your deflection.

Yes, that is what private means as I said in my comment.  Do you not know what private means?

Your claim that the VA is not entirely socialized has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that doctors exist outside the VA.  You seem to imply that since there are private doctors, and VA members are allowed to see those private doctors, that the VA is not entirely socialized.  This convoluted argument is utterly false, and makes very little sense.

There is no argument, I said "completely socialized medicine".

Yes but your argument to that point is that doctors, outside the VA, are not socialized medicine, therefor the VA is not completely socialized.  Your argument makes no sense.

It's like saying that since there are students, outside of Harvard, that are not Harvard students, Harvard is not a school.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.10  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.9    3 weeks ago

Socialized medicine is owned, the doctors are state or federal employees, and managed by a government or centralized entity, private doctors are not.  VA pays the private doctor for their services but have no involvement in ownership or management.  The VA is no longer completely socialized medicine.

It is that simple, if you can't understand it then do some more reading on the subject.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.11  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.10    3 weeks ago
Socialized medicine is owned, the doctors are state or federal employees, and managed by a government or centralized entity, private doctors are not.

Correct, hence the VA is socialized medicine.

VA pays the private doctor for their services but have no involvement in ownership or management.

Meaningless.  All the doctors that work for the VA are state or federal employees, hence the VA is socialized medicine.

The VA is no longer completely socialized medicine.

So once again you are trying to claim that since there are doctors, outside the VA, the VA is not completely socialized.  Ridiculous!

It is that simple, if you can't understand it then do some more reading on the subject.

Strongly suggest you do the reading, your argument is completely nonsensical.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.12  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.11    3 weeks ago

What I stated..

VA pays the private doctor for their services but have no involvement in ownership or management.

What you said...

Meaningless.  All the doctors that work for the VA are state or federal employees, hence the VA is socialized medicine.

Was someone stating different? 

I said it wasn't completely socialized medicine.  For some reason you don't understand the word completely.

dictionary.com for your use.

Not all Veterans go to a VA doctor, they are now allowed to go to private doctors...

hhttp://www.vetsfirst.org/vas-choice-program-allows-veterans-see- private-doctors/ The Choice program will continue to allow veterans to see private doctors if they are experiencing long wait-times in getting their health care needs addressed at the VA. Veterans that live outside 40 miles of a VA facility or who cannot see a VA doctor within 30 days are currently allowed to use the VA Choice program to see a private doctor close to their home

The VA pays the private doctor (who does not work for the VA) no different than Medicare (a social program not socialized medicine as you stated yourself) pays a private doctor.

Hence, the VA is no longer completely socialized medicine, they have moved towards acting as an insurance provider.

Makes sense to anyone who can understand the difference between complete socialized medicine and government administered insurance programs.  

 
 
 
Eat The Press Do Not Read It
1.1.13  Eat The Press Do Not Read It  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    2 weeks ago

The "THREAT OF SOCIALISM" is a "red herring"! 

It is nothing more than a torn, tattered, overused red flag waved in the faces of ignorant folks, snorting like bulls scrapping their hoves in the dirt of the ever-changing "Arena of Reality".

Fearful folks, lost in the past, are easily riled up by corrupt politicians like Trump, Joe McCarthy, George Wallace, and mega killers like Stalin, Hitler, Putin, and "Moscow Mitch", "the hillbilly's bitch".

A lot of working folks, coal miners, rural farmers, and the elderly are looking at the world through their 1930's dusty, cracked bifocals. All they see is their fears!

Con Artists, disingenuous politicians, and fake preachers "gin up" the huddled "masses of unwashed asses" giving license to their nagging night-terrors, and, a name to their enemy:  "Socialism"; that tired, old "bug-a-boo" of Tin Horn Dictators the world over.

256

The real issue is TRUMP!

He must be removed from office, impeached, indicted and impounded in a darkened prison cell with no release date in sight.

Everything else is a distraction.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.14  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.12    2 weeks ago
I said it wasn't completely socialized medicine.  For some reason you don't understand the word completely.

No, you are unable to prove your claim.  VA medicine is socialized since all the VA doctors, nurses, MA's, etc. are government employees.  It's not that difficult to understand.  Veterans can go outside the VA for medical support, but that does not reflect on the fact that the VA is socialized medicine.

The VA pays the private doctor (who does not work for the VA) no different than Medicare (a social program not socialized medicine as you stated yourself) pays a private doctor.

So in your opinion, the VA cannot hire "contract" employees?  The VA cannot pay any bills for anything outside itself?  If the VA pays for a UPS delivery, does that automatically void its socialized medicine status since UPS is a private company? 

Your argument, now, that if the VA pays any bills outside itself, therefore is not a socialized department is ludicrous.

Denmark is a socialist country, by your argument, if Denmark pays a bill for a company that is not part of Denmark, then Denmark is no longer a socialist country.  Are you starting to see how silly your claim is?

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.15  Sparty On  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.14    2 weeks ago
VA medicine is socialized since all the VA doctors, nurses, MA's, etc. are government employees. 

Only problem with your gambit here is the VA doesn't represent all the people of the system.   So how can it be Socialism if it doesn't cover all the people?

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.16  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.14    2 weeks ago
UPS delivery

You do realize that UPS is not a health provider? jrSmiley_10_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.17  Ozzwald  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.16    2 weeks ago
You do realize that UPS is not a health provider?

You do realize I was using the UPS as an example?

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Ozzwald
1.1.18  Ozzwald  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.15    2 weeks ago
Only problem with your gambit here is the VA doesn't represent all the people of the system.

Doesn't matter.  All employees of the VA are government employees, that is the only requirement for it be be deemed "socialized".  You do understand that, right?

The VA has contracted consultants, but they are not VA employees so they do not affect that the VA is "socialized".  You do understand that, right?

The VA can contract with outside companies, but since those outside company employees are not VA employees, it does not affect the VA being "socialized".  You do understand that, right?

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.19  Sunshine  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.17    2 weeks ago

Nah, your point went over your own head.

I didn't say the VA wasn't socialized medicine.

You are arguing with yourself.  But, keep on keep on.

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.20  Sparty On  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.18    2 weeks ago
Doesn't matter.  All employees of the VA are government employees, that is the only requirement for it be be deemed "socialized".  You do understand that, right?

Maybe in your mind but from a macroscopic "countrywide" view the VA doesn't represent even 10% of the US population.   Not exactly the best example when discussing Socialism for the USA.

Trying to somehow equate the VA with the entire country is disingenuous at best.   It's a non sequitur.   Absolutely.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.21  author  TᵢG  replied to  Eat The Press Do Not Read It @1.1.13    2 weeks ago
The real issue is TRUMP!

And there are plenty of other articles in which to discuss Trump.   This article is about the utter confusion regarding the term 'socialism' and actions by the US Senate which would perpetuate the confusion.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.22  Ozzwald  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.20    2 weeks ago
Maybe in your mind but from a macroscopic "countrywide" view the VA doesn't represent even 10% of the US population.

So you're saying that in order to be considered a socialized department there is a minimum membership requirement???

jrSmiley_10_smiley_image.gif

Trying to somehow equate the VA with the entire country is disingenuous at best.

Never claimed anything of the sort.

b30.jpg

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
1.1.23  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.12    2 weeks ago
I said it wasn't completely socialized medicine.  For some reason you don't understand the word completely.

This may be the crux of the misunderstanding. Some here believe something or some program can be "a little bit socialist" even though its actual functioning uses many private vendors for equipment, labor, pharmaceuticals, etc. which by definition means they aren't controlling all aspects of the production, distribution, and exchange which would mean they don't meet the definition of "socialist".

But regardless of meeting the actual definition, some like to claim if it sounds even a little bit "social" meaning groups of people benefit while other groups of people pay for it, then in their minds that's enough to proclaim it "Marxism, statism, socialism, communism, fascism!" or whatever combination of random evil sounding ism's seem to generate enough foaming at the mouth from like-minded morons who haven't a clue what any of the ism's actually mean and have no real ideas on how to fix it other than to "get the government out of our lives!".

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.24  Sparty On  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.22    2 weeks ago
So you're saying that in order to be considered a socialized department there is a minimum membership requirement???

You words not mine but nice try.   Deflection is as deflection does .....

The VA is such a piss poor example of a "Socialist by definition" organization it's hard to imagine how one can even go there.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.25  Sunshine  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @1.1.23    2 weeks ago
This may be the crux of the misunderstanding.

There is no misunderstanding...

Why do some take the most simple concepts and turn them into the most complicated to try and prove a point?

Socialized medicine is when the services or products provided, management, and administration are controlled by the governing agent.  Actual services provided are for the treatment of medical conditions. All services and or products provided are determined by the governing agent and all fees are determined by the governing agent.  All administration duties, salaries, wages, etc are set by the governing agent.  Expenses for UPS shipping, utilities, etc are operating expenses not services or products provided.  Patients can only get treatment through the agents doctors and facilities, if they want the agent paying for their healthcare. Patients do not have the option of getting healthcare elsewhere, unless they want to pay for treatment themselves. Funding socialized medicine is provided by either public funding only or combination of private and public dollars. An example in the US would be the VA or some HMO's.

Social medical programs are just that....programs.  They do not provided treatment for medical conditions.  What they provide are payments for services for patients from private doctors and facilities.  Patient does have more choice in the doctors and facilities they can receive treatments from depending on the social program they want to pay for their treatment.  Examples in the US would be Medicare and Medicaid and the VA.

VA is a combination of both.  They provide treatment by their own staff and in their own facilities or they have a program which their patients can use if qualified.

As my point earlier, there is a significant difference between the two.  So anyone who is receiving Medicare benefits and doesn't want those tax dollars going towards socialized medicine healthcare instead is understandable.  A legitimate complaint.  

Doctors and hospitals can not operate at the same quality of care they currently are at Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates and fees only.  It is difficult to find a doctor or dentist that will even take Medicaid.  Most hospitals will, but they make up the loss difference with private insurance patients.

 
 
 
JBB
1.1.26  JBB  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.25    2 weeks ago

Should the agents making the decisions regarding our healthcare be doctors and patients of insurance companies? 

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.27  Sunshine  replied to  JBB @1.1.26    2 weeks ago

Doctors and patients won't be making your healthcare decisions with government ran healthcare. Bureaucrats will be.

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.28  Texan1211  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.27    2 weeks ago

Shhhh. You are going to shatter their dream of Medicare for All and how wonderful it will be!

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.29  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.25    2 weeks ago
Socialized medicine is when the services or products provided, management, and administration are controlled by the governing agent.

A more essential definition is:

Socialized medicine = state control of the funding for national healthcare

A system wherein government is used to collect and distribute funds, set regulations, etc. but where all services are provided by private sector organizations would qualify as socialized medicine.

That is, the government could have ZERO say in medical decisions (those left up to doctor, patient and medical oversite groups) and still be running a socialized medical system.

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.30  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.29    2 weeks ago

Don't you believe that if government is in charge of payments to doctors and other healthcare providers, then govt. will be heavily involved in what happens regarding your care? That govt. will regulate what IT deems to be most cost-effective?

Isn't THAT why we already have a plethora of doctors unwilling or financially unable to take on new Medicaid patients?

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.31  Sunshine  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.28    2 weeks ago
Shhhh. You are going to shatter their dream of Medicare for All and how wonderful it will be!

lol...you see right through me.  

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.32  author  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.30    2 weeks ago
Don't you believe that if government is in charge of payments to doctors and other healthcare providers, then govt. will be heavily involved in what happens regarding your care? That govt. will regulate what IT deems to be most cost-effective?

There are all sorts of ways in which the USA could establish a socialized system of healthcare.    I certainly recognize that most socialized systems do indeed have far more government intrusion than they should (in my opinion).   I also recognize that this control is the default and that the system needs to be designed to prevent that.

But that does not change the fact that the defining characteristics for socialized healthcare is the funding.   All sorts of potential systems arise from that including the kind of system I described (government regulated, administered but executed (including medical decisions) in the private sector).

 
 
 
WallyW
1.1.33  WallyW  replied to  Eat The Press Do Not Read It @1.1.13    2 weeks ago

He must be removed from office, impeached, indicted and impounded in a darkened prison cell with no release date in sight.

Not gonna happen....

Any more dumb ideas?

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.34  Sunshine  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.29    2 weeks ago
A system wherein government is used to collect and distribute funds, set regulations, etc. but where all services are provided by private sector organizations would qualify as socialized medicine.

That would be the single-payer system or the Medicare for all proposal.

You can do that but the reimbursement fees will have to raised to the same level as private insurance carriers.

So then you have bureaucrats deciding what patient care is affordable at those fees and what isn't.  That is only going to be what the private doctors or hospital will provide unless you pay cash.

If you are going to tax the citizens higher to accomplish your social program, then why should they move to your program instead of keeping their private insurance?

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.35  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.32    2 weeks ago

I think it is a little unrealistic to think that our govt. wouldn't be heavily involved, especially where costs are concerned. That WILL effect medical decisions. 

I think if govt. wants to be involved deeply in healthcare, then it should get out of the healthcare insurance business and focus solely on providing medical services.

Like send everyone on some form of govt. "insurance" or program to govt.-run facilities and let doctors who work for the govt. perform the work. No middle man that way, and greatly diminishes the chances for fraud. No unnecessary tests because the doctor won't be profiting from them, and won't have to worry about medical malpractice.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.36  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.34    2 weeks ago
That would be the single-payer system or the Medicare for all proposal.

There are plenty of ways to accomplish socialized healthcare.  The point is that the critical defining characteristic of socialized medicine / healthcare is the funding is public (which means the funding would be administered by government).   There is no requirement that the government execute the services.   What I added is that government would regulate the healthcare because that is already what our government is supposed to do in general so one would normally expect it to be applied here as well.

You can do that but the reimbursement fees will have to raised to the same level as private insurance carriers.  So then you have bureaucrats deciding what patient care is affordable at those fees and what isn't.  That is only going to be what the private doctors or hospital will provide unless you pay cash.

You are talking about a specific proposal which (see above) I did not make.

If you are going to tax the citizens higher to accomplish your social program, then why should they move to your program instead of keeping their private insurance?

And you are still talking about a specific program that you have imagined and now have attributed to me:  'your program'.


Just so this is clear, this is what I wrote:

TiG @1.1.29 - Socialized medicine = state control of the funding for national healthcare

Here I provided a common essential definition for what would constitute socialized medicine.   You can look this up, not my invention.

TiG @1.1.29 - A system wherein government is used to collect and distribute funds, set regulations, etc. but where all services are provided by private sector organizations would qualify as socialized medicine.

So here I put the definition in English pointing out that control of the funding pretty much means collecting and distributing the funds and I added that government would of course regulate this.   Then I noted that this definition allows for all services to be provided by the private sector.

TiG @1.1.29 - That is, the government could have ZERO say in medical decisions (those left up to doctor, patient and medical oversite groups) and still be running a socialized medical system.

Finally, I emphasize that even under the definition of socialized medicine there is no requirement that the government have any say in medical decisions.

So that is what I actually wrote.    To close I will now note that socialized medicine has nothing to do with having in place an economic system of socialism.   It could be a part of any socio-economic/political system and everywhere it exists we find a capitalist engine funding it.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.37  author  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.35    2 weeks ago
I think it is a little unrealistic to think that our govt. wouldn't be heavily involved, especially where costs are concerned. That WILL effect medical decisions. 

So what do you think I meant when I wrote this?:

TiG @1.1.32 - I certainly recognize that most socialized systems do indeed have far more government intrusion than they should (in my opinion).   I also recognize that this control is the default and that the system needs to be designed to prevent that.

What about my language was unclear?

That WILL effect medical decisions. 

I think you meant it will affect medical decisions.   And that is what I mentioned above ⇧ as the default.   It is natural that the purse-string holder will influence medical decisions.   That is why we would need to design against that (again see above ⇧).

I think if govt. wants to be involved deeply in healthcare, then it should get out of the healthcare insurance business and focus solely on providing medical services.

I greatly dislike the idea of government running healthcare.   My preference is that government do what it supposed to do (administer and regulate) and leave the hard healthcare to professionals (and medical oversight boards in the private sector).

Personally, I have always envisioned a hybrid system wherein the most common ailments (e.g. setting broken arms, dealing with viruses, etc.) are handled in a more mechanical, high-efficient, cost-effective, solid quality manner.   We already have the basics for that with our urgent care centers.   The hospitals then deal with the more complex issues and we could even have a third tier for advanced medicine (and this is also a funding source for advanced research).

I think government run healthcare (proper) would suck.  I am surprised you have suggested that.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.38  Sunshine  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.36    2 weeks ago
A system wherein government is used to collect and distribute funds, set regulations, etc. but where all services are provided by private sector organizations would qualify as socialized medicine.

That is what you said.  That is a single payer system.  

You are talking about a specific proposal which (see above) I did not make.

Well yes you did....see above.

Finally, I emphasize that even under the definition of socialized medicine there is no requirement that the government have any say in medical decisions.

They have to. How do you propose to keep cost in line with funds collected?

So that is what I actually wrote.

Well no it isn't.

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.39  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.37    2 weeks ago
I think government run healthcare (proper) would suck. I am surprised you have suggested that.

I thought I had made it abundantly clear that IF (key word) govt. wants to be involved in healthcare, then I feel it should get out of the healthcare insurance business.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.40  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.27    2 weeks ago

Doctors and patients won't be making your healthcare decisions with government ran healthcare. Bureaucrats will be.

As someone who has had medical care/insurance through the military for most of my life, I can guarantee you that bureaucrats do not make health care decisions.  I have had problems, however, with civilian insurance having clerks overruling my doctor (and me)!

(PS The military medical system is a socialist medical system.  It also has one of the best outcomes.)

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.41  Karri  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.28    2 weeks ago
Medicare for All

Medicare for All is not socialized medicine.  You will get to pick your doctor, hospital, etc.  It is, however, socialized insurance.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.42  Karri  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.37    2 weeks ago

From https://www.healthinsurance.org/glossary/socialized-medicine/

Socialized medicine is, by definition, a health care system in which the government owns and operates health care facilities and employs the health care professionals, thus also paying for all health care services. Examples abroad include the British National Health Service, and national health systems in countries such as Finland and Spain, but NOT including Canada’s Medicare system (which is publicly funded but which does not own all of the health facilities).


Closer to home, the Veterans Health Administration is, as one author points out, “actually socialized medicine, where the government owns the hospitals and employs the doctors.” Medicare is an example of single-payer (the federal government) system, but it’s not socialized medicine because the doctors and hospitals are privately operated — the government pays them, but does not own or employ them. Medicaid is similar, in that it’s government funded, although the funding comes from both state and federal governments, rather than a single source.

Source: https://www.healthinsurance.org/glossary/socialized-medicine/
Follow us: @EyeOnInsurance on Twitter | healthinsurance.org on Facebook

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.43  Sunshine  replied to  Karri @1.1.40    2 weeks ago
I can guarantee you that bureaucrats do not make health care decisions. 

jrSmiley_55_smiley_image.gif I can guarantee they do.  They decide what benefits to offer and cover....not any different than a private insurance provider.

(PS The military medical system is a socialist medical system. It also has one of the best outcomes.)

That statement shows you didn't read all my post.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.44  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.38    2 weeks ago
That is what you said.  That is a single payer system.  

And you immediately presume "a system wherein government is used to collect and distribute funds, set regulations, etc. but where all services are provided by private sector organizations would qualify as socialized medicine" can only mean single-payer.

First, let's establish the fact that even 'single-payer' is a category; not a specific proposal.   There are many ways to implement single-payer.   

Second, and more important, there is no stipulation in the definition I offered that all the funding must come from public funds.   A predominantly funded system from public funds would still qualify as 'socialized healthcare'.  Now take that concept and consider tiers of service, copays, etc.   Voilà, you have socialized healthcare which is predominantly single-payer but with the patients keeping skin in the game.   (When I do make proposals, by the way, I always have skin in the game for the patients.   One critical reason for this is to mitigate abuse of 'free' services.)

What I wrote to Texan @1.1.37 starts to approach a specific proposal (at least more specific than a definition):

TiG @1.1.37 - I greatly dislike the idea of government running healthcare.   My preference is that government do what it supposed to do (administer and regulate) and leave the hard healthcare to professionals (and medical oversight boards in the private sector).  Personally, I have always envisioned a hybrid system wherein the most common ailments (e.g. setting broken arms, dealing with viruses, etc.) are handled in a more mechanical, high-efficient, cost-effective, solid quality manner.   We already have the basics for that with our urgent care centers.   The hospitals then deal with the more complex issues and we could even have a third tier for advanced medicine (and this is also a funding source for advanced research).

In short, no I most certainly did not make a specific proposal to you:  I stated funding administration (as per the definition of 'socialized medicine') and added normal government regulation.   

They have to. How do you propose to keep cost in line with funds collected?

I disagree that it is impossible to have the government manage the funding without having them also make medical decisions.    The funding of a national healthcare system can be based on aggregate (vs. patient by patient) need just like the military, intelligence services, etc.   There would be regulations (as I noted) to establish basic parameters but the specific medical decisions are made by the doctor and patient ... with medical review board oversight (for medical integrity).   

If a patient needs surgery followed by chemo and the doctor (who, again, is subject to oversight) deems it medically correct, then the patient should not have to fight with government bureaucrats to get the treatment.   On the flip-side, if the patient seeks leading edge treatment (always more expensive) then that option will require the patient to cover the difference.  Same applies if the patient wants to get vanity surgery (and equivalent).   These are just common sense examples to get the point across.

The key to controlling costs is not to have bureaucrats (as we have with the insurance carriers) making medical decisions by denying treatments called by the physicians.   Rather it is to have systemic factors to keep physician integrity in check (I mentioned medical boards as one factor) and to mitigate patients from abusing the system (I mentioned skin in the game as one factor here).    

'Impossible' is premature.

Well no it isn't.

Presume less.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.45  author  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.39    2 weeks ago
I thought I had made it abundantly clear that IF (key word) govt. wants to be involved in healthcare, then I feel it should get out of the healthcare insurance business.

And I am surprised that you would suggest it even as conditional.  I would have expected you to say something different like the government should not be involved in healthcare or healthcare insurance.

You introduced and then said nothing bad about government run healthcare.   That surprises me.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.46  Sunshine  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.44    2 weeks ago

Oh my goodness,  when you understand the basics of medical benefits coverage (government or private), containing cost, by limiting care, to match funds/receipts...get back with me.

Now I understand why many are naïve about healthcare.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.47  author  TᵢG  replied to  Karri @1.1.42    2 weeks ago
Socialized medicine is, by definition, a health care system in which the government owns ... 

Unfortunately, people define these terms differently.   

This sidebar on healthcare started by me making the distinction between socialized healthcare and socialism.    I noted that socialized healthcare does not require an economic system of socialism.   Indeed it exists almost entirely in systems that are without debate running capitalist economies.

I am okay to use a label such as:  'healthcare as a public service' in my comments.   If you substitute that in my comments, my point remains untouched.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.48  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.46    2 weeks ago

Think outside of the box Sunshine.   If you restrict your thoughts to extant parameters you will indeed not be able to imagine anything different.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.49  Sunshine  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.48    2 weeks ago
Think outside of the box Sunshine.

I suggest you do the same and understand how medical benefits, regardless of government or private, are paid for and who decides what those benefits are.  A board of bureaucrats or a board of directors, it isn't unlimited either way regardless of medical need.  You can not intelligently advocate for either one until you understand the basics.  

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.50  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.45    2 weeks ago
And I am surprised that you would suggest it even as conditional. I would have expected you to say something different like the government should not be involved in healthcare or healthcare insurance.
You introduced and then said nothing bad about government run healthcare. That surprises me.

Then maybe you shouldn't rely on your instincts so much and instead rely on what you see me write.
I look at it as inevitable that govt. will run all healthcare one day. Too many want the govt. to supply too much to them. I don't think it will be any better---govt.'s track record sucks, so I will be VERY pleasantly surprised if it is even decent care.

It isn't something I look forward to, but I am not blind nor stupid enough to think it won't happen one day. Hopefully, after I am gone.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.51  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.49    2 weeks ago

Repeating your allegation that I am ignorant of the basics of how our system works pretty much tells me that you have no rebuttal to my comments.

Note, you are here publicly trying to convince readers that I do not understand, for example, why extant systems of socialized healthcare (e.g. that of the U.K.) have bureaucrats considering factors such as the age of patient and denying treatment accordingly, or why insurance companies impose limits of coverage and deny services.   

And this is in response to me suggesting that I am not at all convinced that it is impossible to produce a system wherein medical decisions are made by patient and physician and costs are effectively managed in the aggregate (vs. individual by individual).    

The fact that you cannot or will not break free of our existing infrastructure and even consider the possibility of alternate ways to design a system does not mean that anyone who disagrees with you is ignorant of how our system works (or is stupid).   Best to cease with the gratuitous insults and focus more on content.   

It is amazing what human beings have been able to accomplish when we break past what others deem as 'impossible'.   We might just be able to devise a healthcare system that is both cost effective and does not deny patients the care they need.   

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.52  author  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.50    2 weeks ago
Then maybe you shouldn't rely on your instincts so much and instead rely on what you see me write.

Did you not read this?:  

TiG @1.1.45 - And I am surprised that you would suggest it even as conditional.  I would have expected you to say something different like the government should not be involved in healthcare or healthcare insurance. You introduced and then said nothing bad about government run healthcare.   That surprises me.

I acknowledged your conditional and noted that conditional or not that I am surprised that you brought up government run healthcare and did not say anything bad about it.

You did introduce it, right (with your conditional)?   You did not say anything bad about it, right?   

Do you have something to say about the content or are you going to keep trying to pick petty fights?   I wrote a rather detailed response to your post @1.1.37 and the only response you had was on my sidebar comment about my surprise.   And this alone is now what we are discussing.

Find something else (somewhere near the topic) to discuss.   In other words, let's end this pointless meta.

 
 
 
Texan1211
1.1.53  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.52    2 weeks ago

I am truly sorry I didn't respond as you think a conservative should.

I'll work on it just for you.

But if govt. becomes more involved, you can bet your last dollar that quality of care will go down, we will face a larger shortage of doctors, and decisions WILL be made about healthcare based on what is cost-effective.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.54  Sunshine  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.51    2 weeks ago
The fact that you cannot or will not break free of our existing infrastructure and even consider the possibility of alternate ways to design a system

Please provide evidence of your assumption.

does not mean that anyone who disagrees with you is ignorant of how our system works (or is stupid).

I didn't say anyone is stupid.  I see it is ok for you to put words in others mouths.  I said you don't have an understanding of the basics and your comments reflect it.

   Best to cease with the gratuitous insults and focus more on content.   

I have given more than sufficient content with facts.  You don't understand the content and refuse to accept facts.

It is amazing what human beings have been able to accomplish when we break past what others deem as 'impossible'.  

I didn't say anything was impossible.  In fact I said you can do what you propose, and you did propose it, but you would have to increase reimbursement fees and cut care to cover cost.

We might just be able to devise a healthcare system that is both cost effective and does not deny patients the care they need.

That was the Obamacare promise.  And it failed on that promise.

Again, unless one has an understanding how healthcare systems actually work, it is hard to make a compelling logical argument based on facts and real world applications.

I don't see where you have made a compelling argument based on facts and real world applications.

You don't even understand that doctors become bureaucrats when they sit on governing boards and make medical decisions with restrictions based on cost.  

Me having to point these basics out to you, shows that you don't have an understanding of how limited resources are distributed regardless of need.  

It is not an insult it is an observation of your comments.

Have a good night!

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.55  author  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @1.1.53    2 weeks ago
But if govt. becomes more involved, you can bet your last dollar that quality of care will go down, ...

If government is involved in the typical manner, quality of care will go down and costs will go up.

... we will face a larger shortage of doctors, and decisions WILL be made about healthcare based on what is cost-effective.

So, yes, a straight-line extrapolation based on where our system is today (and the incompetence of our politicians) suggests that any system they sponsor will be more political than thoughtful and thus almost guaranteed to fail.

There are many ways to approach this that could yield very positive results (reduced costs, better coverage, etc.) but the likelihood that this will actually take place in the USA in present times is indeed slim.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.56  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.54    2 weeks ago
That was the Obamacare promise.  And it failed on that promise.

There are many ways to architect a national healthcare system.   The fact that Obamacare is less than spectacular is not a very good argument that ALL approaches are therefore doomed.   Also, Obamacare is not a national healthcare system; we are talking about healthcare writ large, not health insurance. 

You don't even understand that doctors become bureaucrats when they sit on governing boards and make medical decisions with restrictions based on cost.

I mentioned a medical board for medical integrity (oversight on doctors making proper medical decisions); I made no comment about a medical board for imposing restrictions based on cost.   Another presumption from you that makes no sense based on what I wrote.   

Me having to point these basics out to you, shows that you don't have an understanding of how limited resources are distributed regardless of need.  

If you had pointed out basic items that rebutted what I wrote you might have a point.   That is not what you did and that is not what has taken place.    You simply declare from thin air that I do not understand select dynamics of a bureaucratic cost center.   That, 'Sunshine' is a strawman tactic.   Given it is used to simply be insulting, it is also trolling.

Comment on the content and cease making this personal.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
1.1.57  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.51    2 weeks ago
It is amazing what human beings have been able to accomplish when we break past what others deem as 'impossible'.

Yes.

   We might just be able to devise a healthcare system that is both cost effective and does not deny patients the care they need.

Sorry, but I don't think so.

I agree it is probably, in theory, possible to design such a system.  I disagree that "we" would ever be able to do it.

Much the way that while I agree it is possible for a human being to throw a baseball 100mph, I disagree that Warren Buffett 'might just be able' to do that.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.58  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @1.1.57    2 weeks ago
I disagree that "we" would ever be able to do it.

If 'we' considers current Congress then I agree.   I think it is possible for human beings in civil society to devise a healthcare system that is both cost effective (as in has little waste and the funds go to their intended purpose) and does not deny patients the care they need (as in medical decisions not being made by bureaucrats).

Nothing of value would get done if we always looked at our current systems and presumed that this is the best we can ever do.   Progress stems from people who push the envelope and break free of dogmatic thinking.    For example, where would we be without disruptive technologies where entrepreneurs realize ideas that change the way people think (and behave)?    The most obvious present example is the iPhone.

In my experience, 'impossible' is usually a failure of imagination.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.59  Ozzwald  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.24    2 weeks ago
You words not mine but nice try.

Your words:

Maybe in your mind but from a macroscopic "countrywide" view the VA doesn't represent even 10% of the US population

Are you going to claim my summary wasn't a fair representation?  Then perhaps you can better explain what membership in the VA being 10% (your number), has to do with it be a socialist program.

The VA is such a piss poor example of a "Socialist by definition" organization it's hard to imagine how one can even go there.

In your opinion.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
1.1.60  Ozzwald  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.47    2 weeks ago
Unfortunately, people define these terms differently.

Just because Republicans invent their own definitions, doesn't make it a fact.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.61  author  TᵢG  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.60    2 weeks ago

I agree, but it is not just Rs who redefine terms.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.62  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.43    2 weeks ago
That statement shows you didn't read all my post.

I went back and reread 1.1.27.  There was no mention of the military.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.63  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.43    2 weeks ago
not any different than a private insurance provider.

At least with the government making the decisions, we can vote them in or out, depending on how we feel about their coverage.  That is what they did in Canada.  I have discussed this with my Canadian cousins and they love their insurance; they would never want to use our system.  (Same goes for my relatives in England.)

 
 
 
Don Overton
1.1.64  Don Overton  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.24    2 weeks ago

You really  don't know  how good the VA really is unless you've been there, especially for months

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.65  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.46    2 weeks ago
when you understand the basics of medical benefits coverage (government or private),

Will I do?  Not only am I a health care professional (for decades), I have also served on boards that determined employee health care insurance coverage.  I also have relatives in both Canada (single payer) and England (socialized medicine).

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.66  Karri  replied to  TᵢG @1.1.47    2 weeks ago
I noted that socialized healthcare does not require an economic system of socialism.

Yes, I completely agree on this issue.  My concern is that we are using the proper terms when referring to health care.  It does make a difference.

 
 
 
Sunshine
1.1.67  Sunshine  replied to  Karri @1.1.62    2 weeks ago
I went back and reread 1.1.27.  There was no mention of the military.

I said all my post.  The thread nor my comments started there.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.1.68  author  TᵢG  replied to  Karri @1.1.66    2 weeks ago
It does make a difference.

It does indeed.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.69  Karri  replied to  Don Overton @1.1.64    2 weeks ago
how good the VA really is

You are correct.  The VA (and the military) have outcomes on par with the Mayo Clinic (top 5 year in and year out.)

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.70  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.67    2 weeks ago
I said all my post.

"Post" is singular and therefore refers to only one post.  I was replying to a specific post and that post (singular) does not mention the military.

Since I don't have time to go back and read all your remarks, perhaps you could tell me exactly what you meant, I can answer that post.  (Mind you, I find the large majority to be totally off-base, so be aware that I will remark on any misinformation you post.)

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.71  Sparty On  replied to  Don Overton @1.1.64    2 weeks ago

Not true.    One can experience the VA negatively through family and friends that have gotten or are getting boned by it regularly.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.72  Karri  replied to  Sunshine @1.1.27    2 weeks ago
Doctors and patients won't be making your healthcare decisions with government ran healthcare.

After my first child was born, I was allowed to decide when I was ready to go home; this was in the days of "drive through deliveries."  BTW, my children were both born in military hospitals.  The bureaucrats did not have a say.

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.73  Sparty On  replied to  Karri @1.1.72    2 weeks ago

Military hospitals are not public healthcare.    The days of staying as long as you want are long gone in that regard.    

It started with DRG’s and has just accelerated from there.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.74  Karri  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.73    2 weeks ago
It started with DRG’s

DRGs were in practice at the time.  Don't forget, drive through deliveries were the norm back then.

Yes, military hospitals are not "public", but they are an example of socialized medicine and medicine run by the government.  That was my point -- that the doctor and I decided how long I needed to stay and not bureaucrats.

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.75  Sparty On  replied to  Karri @1.1.74    2 weeks ago

I was in public healthcare pre DRG's and post DRG's.   Before DRG's it was not abnormal for a patient to decide on a longer than required stay if they so desired.   DRG's more or less stopped that.

There was a reason for that.   Costs were out of control.   With the current condition of run-away healthcare costs can you imagine how much worse it would be without DRG's?   Costs would be much much higher.    No doubt about it.

The costs to operate in that manner, in all Public Healthcare, are beyond enormous.   Between the VA and Military healthcare we spend over 100 million for about 30 million active/inactive duty personnel and Vets.   Thats over 3 million per person.   Extend that to the other 300 million people in the US ...... over one trillion dollars.   Sanders number of 1.4 trillion a year is in the ballpark and he is being honest about EVERYONES taxes going up if we go that route.

 Big time!

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.76  Karri  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.75    2 weeks ago
Between the VA and Military healthcare we spend over 100 million

I tried to find a citation for this but I could not.  Could you give me one, please?  Seriously, I would likely to learn more about this.

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.77  Sparty On  replied to  Karri @1.1.76    2 weeks ago

It's an old bookmark but it still applies as the 100 million total i mentioned has most definitely increased significantly over time.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/aroy/2012/03/12/how-health-care-spending-strains-the-u-s-military/#650811212c54

The 30 million estimate on personnel is high as well.   That's closer to 22-23 million.   20 million Vets and less than 3 million active/reserve/Nat Guard personnel.

So my estimates are very conservative in all cases.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.78  Karri  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.77    2 weeks ago

Thank you, Sparty.  Normally, I would consider Forbes to be a reliable source.  However, the author made several mistakes.  For instance, he is forgetting the government's promise to cover all active duty and retirees (and their families) with free health care.  That is one of the reasons many people choose to stay for the entire 20 years (or even longer, as my family has done.)  It also ignores the TFL foundation.  

In the past, you were dropped from Tricare when you become eligible for Medicare.  Most retirees turned to MTFs/hospitals for health care.  Then, they started closing military hospitals.  So, the government was sued and the courts agreed that the military had to provide military health care benefits to all retirees, regardless of their age.  I expect that the same thing would occur if our heath care benefits are further eroded.

On the other hand, health care costs will rise over the 20-30 years as the baby boomers grow older and require greater health care.  Then it will drop until millennials come of (old) age, but it will not grow quite as much as it has for my generation.

In any case, I do thank you and accept your numbers.

 
 
 
Sparty On
1.1.79  Sparty On  replied to  Karri @1.1.78    2 weeks ago

I have family members that are retired military.    One on 80% disability (only after years of fighting for it) and one with 34 years service.    Tricare covers almost everything for him.

The VA may be a poorly run bloated bureaucracy but they are taking great care of them.    Even if it was a ridiculous fight to get there.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.80  Karri  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.79    one week ago
Tricare covers almost everything for him.

Yes, it does now (and has for a couple of decades.)

Personally, it bothers me how far our benefits have fallen.  TFL is one of the few good changes.

 
 
 
Karri
1.1.81  Karri  replied to  Sparty On @1.1.79    one week ago
but they are taking great care of them.

Yep.  Once you are in the VA health care system (a socialized from of medicine), you have a system with really good outcomes.  As I said before, top five year in and year out.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
1.2  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @1    3 weeks ago

You have written a good article here, but you have too much faith in Senator Daines

If you are going to put forth serious content, senator, 
 
 
 
Heartland American
1.3  Heartland American  replied to  TᵢG @1    3 weeks ago

I see that my seed about Daines wonderful and wise resolution that every member of Congress should support has triggered some. “The United States 🇺🇸 of America will never become a socialist nation”. President Trump. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.3.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  Heartland American @1.3    3 weeks ago

Make a comment on the content HA if you wish to participate.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
1.3.2  Jack_TX  replied to  Heartland American @1.3    2 weeks ago
I see that my seed about Daines wonderful and wise resolution that every member of Congress should support has triggered some. “The United States 🇺🇸 of America will never become a socialist nation”. President Trump. 

It's a bit moronic, IMO.

It's kinda like one of those anti Sharia law resolutions.  It's a "solution" looking for a problem.

 
 
 
r.t..b...
1.4  r.t..b...  replied to  TᵢG @1    3 weeks ago
but now we have a Senate proposal to deem anything that falls under the overloaded word 'socialism' to be a threat to the nation?

...and yet 'nationalism' has been redefined to be synonymous with patriotism...and that could not be further from the truth. 

 
 
 
It Is ME
1.4.1  It Is ME  replied to  r.t..b... @1.4    3 weeks ago
...and yet 'nationalism' has been redefined to be synonymous with patriotism..

Only a certain few find it to have "Changed". It's a "Political thingy dontchyaknow !

" Nationalism is an ideology and movement characterized by the promotion of the interests of a particular nation, especially with the aim of gaining and maintaining the nation's sovereignty (self-governance) over its homeland. Nationalism holds that each nation should govern itself, free from outside interference (self-determination), that a nation is a natural and ideal basis for a polity."

That's just terrible ain't it ? jrSmiley_87_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
JumpDrive
1.4.2  JumpDrive  replied to  It Is ME @1.4.1    3 weeks ago
"Nationalism is an ideology and movement characterized by the promotion of the interests of a particular nation, especially with the aim of gaining and maintaining the nation's sovereignty (self-governance) over its homeland. Nationalism holds that each nation should govern itself, free from outside interference (self-determination), that a nation is a natural and ideal basis for a polity."

This is a heavily sanitized 'definition' of nationalism. Here's the Merriam-Webster definition:

a sense of national consciousness exalting one nation above all others and placing primary emphasis on promotion of its culture and interests as opposed to those of other nations or supranational groups

"exalting","primary emphasis on ... its culture and interests" -- "We're great, fuck you" doesn't seem like the best operating strategy.

 
 
 
It Is ME
1.4.3  It Is ME  replied to  JumpDrive @1.4.2    2 weeks ago
"exalting","primary emphasis on ... its culture and interests" -- "We're great, fuck you" doesn't seem like the best operating strategy.

The "Your Great Fuck us" used by "Others" hasn't working very well over the decades. jrSmiley_87_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Eat The Press Do Not Read It
1.5  Eat The Press Do Not Read It  replied to  TᵢG @1    2 weeks ago

It is a Republican "rube", an attempt to institute the word "Socialism" as a pejorative term.

Republicans in the Senate have taken no action on the "Mass Killings" of our children, or, our fellow citizens, as they go about their business.

Republican submitted no reasonable legislation concerning the heedless slaughter of our citizens. Instead, they blocked any DISCUSSION on Gun Violence in the Senate.

These deplorable criminal acts are immensely more important than demonizing a word.

256

 
 
 
It Is ME
1.5.1  It Is ME  replied to  Eat The Press Do Not Read It @1.5    2 weeks ago
Republicans in the Senate have taken no action on the "Mass Killings" of our children, or, our fellow citizens

What is needed then ?

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.5.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Eat The Press Do Not Read It @1.5    2 weeks ago
It is a Republican "rube", an attempt to institute the word "Socialism" as a pejorative term.

Agreed.

 
 
 
WallyW
1.6  WallyW  replied to  TᵢG @1    2 weeks ago

Whatever the far leftists want to call it, it's bad for this country.

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  WallyW @1.6    2 weeks ago

What, specifically, is the 'it'?   'Socialism' is not a single thing.  That is the problem I am illustrating in this article.   There are all sorts of things that are called 'socialism' and some of these things are already part of our system.

What, specifically, is bad for this country?  Do not just say 'socialism' because that is meaningless.   State, specifically, that which you consider to be bad so that people know what you are talking about.

 
 
 
WallyW
1.6.2  WallyW  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.1    2 weeks ago

IT is what the democrats are attempting to do presently. It's all out there in plain sight

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.3  author  TᵢG  replied to  WallyW @1.6.2    2 weeks ago
IT is what the democrats are attempting to do presently. It's all out there in plain sight

Come on Wally, you are still being vague.   The democrats are proposing all sorts of stuff.   You cannot seriously be claiming that everything the collective D's are proposing is socialism and that it is all bad.

What, specifically, do you dislike in the D proposals that you also consider to be socialism?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.6.4  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.1    2 weeks ago
What, specifically, is the 'it'?   'Socialism' is not a single thing.

Aside from socialisms other problems, it not being a single thing is one of it's biggest disadvantage, in my opinion. If one reads the Wiki entry on socialism, one comes away with the impression that not even socialists agree with what socialism should look like or how it should operate. It contains ideas that are not easy to understand and seem based more on academic theory than on any practical reality.  

Another problem with it is that, the more socialist a country is, the less freedom the individual has to advance on their own merits. Labor unions are a good example of this. Two workers in the same job class, one who has a strong work ethic and works hard and the other who only does just barely enough to get by and does that badly, still get paid exactly the same. The hard worker can't go and say, "I should get paid more because I do more."

Not that I'm against labor unions in a capitalistic system. I'm not. They are necessary to keep workers safe and decently paid. However, I think they are a microcosm of what a truly socialistic society devolves into. Some working hard to make things work while the rest does just enough to get along. Too many say to themselves, why should I work harder if it doesn't bring me more? 

I think socialism might be something workable if human beings were a lot more altruistic than we are, but we aren't. I also think it could work if the scale were small enough, but the larger the population, the harder it becomes. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.5  author  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.6.4    2 weeks ago
Aside from socialisms other problems, it not being a single thing is one of it's biggest disadvantage, in my opinion.

I agree.   The label 'socialism' means many things and these varied meanings often contradict each other.   As far as I am concerned, anyone who uses the word 'socialism' unqualified to describe anything will be incoherent.   And that is what we are seeing today.  People talking about socialism as if the term had some specific meaning and, in result, saying nothing of value.

Another problem with it is that, the more socialist a country is, the less freedom the individual has to advance on their own merits. 

I submit there has never been a socialist country (at least not one that follows the core meaning of socialism which is democratic control of the economy by the workers).   Plenty of nations have labeled as 'socialist' and that act of labeling has expanded the meaning of the term.

But if you are using the term 'socialist' in this context to mean 'like the USSR' then I totally agree with you.   When workers are controlled by an oppressive state they become resources (human machines) and the system largely degrades into an egalitarian form in which everyone (other than the ruling party) is at an equivalent level of misery.

The hard worker can't go and say, "I should get paid more because I do more."

Yup.  Now here I am not sure what nation you have in mind.   It is an egalitarian environment you describe so let's go with that.   A system based on egalitarian rewards is doomed (IMO).   People do not work that way.  Further, there is no such thing as equal since everyone is different, circumstances are different, etc.   The only sensible human system is one in which individual contributions vary and individual compensation varies accordingly.   People who are more effective (by virtue of physical prowess, work ethic, intelligence, knowledge, etc.) should be better compensated.   Note that I am talking about effectiveness.   It does not matter how hard or long someone works, what matters is the relevance to the entity.

Socialist systems, in general, do not propose such an egalitarian approach.   Some have an egalitarian flavor (I disapprove), but most systems today are based on competition.    Equal opportunity with unequal results.

Too many say to themselves, why should I work harder if it doesn't bring me more? 

Exactly!   And they are spot on.   A great way to disincentive a worker is to place the worker in a position where the application of ambition is irrelevant.

I think socialism might be something workable if human beings were a lot more altruistic than we are, but we aren't.

I agree.   This is one of the reasons why I suggest that socialism is likely to never emerge (in actuality, not just in name only) without some significant societal evolution.   Socialism (core meaning) seems to require each person to be much more involved in both business and society and certainly much more aware.   It seems to require individuals who can see a bigger picture and make decisions that are not simply for net individual gain in the short term.   This is not how I see our current societies,  but what may come in the future might just be more altruism.

I also think it could work if the scale were small enough, but the larger the population, the harder it becomes. 

There have been a number of notable smaller scale successes.   One larger scale success is Mondragon Corporation (workplace democracy and cooperation of multiple such businesses).   But nothing at the national level.   Mondragon thus is largely an experiment in workplace democracy but not really socialism writ large.

I do not expect anyone living today will live long enough to see any nation with a socialist economy.   It would be such a remarkably different environment and require such different viewpoints by the demos that I think it would take quite a few generations to get there.    And it may never ever appear.   The future (better, hopefully) economic system in the USA (at least) might be some variant of capitalism (one where class disparity has been corralled).

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.6.6  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.5    2 weeks ago
I submit there has never been a socialist country (at least not one that follows the core meaning of socialism which is democratic control of the economy by the workers). Plenty of nations have labeled as 'socialist' and that act of labeling has expanded the meaning of the term.

I do not disagree. I would only submit that it seems to me the possibility of a truly socialistic nation approaches zero. No matter how well a country's beginning might have gone, every moment of time since it's inception draws corruption, no matter how hard one tries. Power seems to draw the most corruptable among us. It seems to be a constant. 

Further, it is difficult to imagine a democratically socialist nation to not drown itself in endless debate or that the minority that lost a vote would just go along with the majority vote. I think it would be great if they did, but it just doesn't seem like human nature allows it. 

But if you are using the term 'socialist' in this context to mean 'like the USSR' then I totally agree with you. When workers are controlled by an oppressive state they become resources (human machines) and the system largely degrades into an egalitarian form in which everyone (other than the ruling party) is at an equivalent level of misery.

It's not so much that I'm using the term in that context (although essentially I was) as I don't see how any other context can actualize. In a sense, I actually like the idea of communism as a concept, although I should state what I am thinking of when I say that has little to do with Marxism. If every individual woke in the morning with the though "How can I help others get what they need?" rather than "How can I get what I want?", we could do either communism or capitalism and things would work out great. 

I do not expect anyone living today will live long enough to see any nation with a socialist economy.

I don't think anyone ever will. Our nature is the same as every other organism that has ever lived on this planet and it hasn't evolved at all. I remember a number of comments made during the runup to the 2016 Presidential elections. It was "Why would anyone vote against their self interest" or a variation of that. I always wanted to answer "Is voting for my self interest in this case harmful to others?." The point is, of course, when does the common good override self interest? Not a lot of people think that way and that's the way one needs to think if they're going to be a socialist. 

From what you've said, it seems that you think capitalism is a better, more realistic way to go. So do I. But I'm sure you'd agree that there's tons of problems with it as well. The most obvious is the ridiculous concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few. Personally, a realistic estimation of human nature tells me that capitalism, combined with certain socialized programs is about the best we can do. At least on a national level. 

I could almost wish for a solar event large enough to destroy the electrical infrastructure of the world. Not that I hope for the likely billions of deaths that would result, but rather, that it would be a reset back to what was actually important. I'm sure there would be many different groups with different models of governing themselves but I think that in some of them, socialism would have the best chance of being an actual thing. A community small enough where everyone knew and cared about everyone else and their well being. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.7  author  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.6.6    2 weeks ago
I would only submit that it seems to me the possibility of a truly socialistic nation approaches zero. No matter how well a country's beginning might have gone, every moment of time since it's inception draws corruption, no matter how hard one tries. Power seems to draw the most corruptable among us. It seems to be a constant. 

That actually is an argument that socialism would do better.   If we were to fast forward to what most socialists seem to have in mind, the world consists of a network of communities each with democratic rule.   The communities determine which businesses they wish to support (e.g. if a community wants a wind farm or a shopping center) and impose restrictions on same (e.g. pollution restrictions).   The businesses operate in a regulated but otherwise free market competing to win the favor of the consumers.   Within each business the managers (if you will) operate at the pleasure of the workers.   That is, the managers can be removed by vote of the workers.   Without going into a ton of details, hopefully this sets the stage.

One thing that can be said about the objectives of socialism is that it seeks distributed economic power.   People will have unequal wealth, but the ability to leverage the inequality to impose control on others would be substantially less than what we see in USA capitalism.   

That said, every society will have corruption.  Nothing will stop people under socialism from forming groups and wielding influence.   But the distributed democratic nature of the system seems to produce much fewer opportunities and certainly limits the level of potential power.   For example, there would be no Koch or Soros who have clustered enormous wealth.   Instead of clusters of wealth there would be more distributed wealth (by earning, not by any redistribution nonsense).   Think one billionaire = 1000 millionaires.

Further, it is difficult to imagine a democratically socialist nation to not drown itself in endless debate or that the minority that lost a vote would just go along with the majority vote. I think it would be great if they did, but it just doesn't seem like human nature allows it. 

Why would it be worse than what we see today in our system?

If every individual woke in the morning with the though "How can I help others get what they need?" rather than "How can I get what I want?", we could do either communism or capitalism and things would work out great. 

That is more altruistic than is needed (at least per the Marx view).   Although this seems silly, think of Star Trek.   The society there has rather substantial parallels with communism a'la Marx.   Gene Roddenberry did this on purpose.   This is a society where all the needs are met via the replicators.   Nobody had to work to live.  Instead, they all lived to work.   Their work was their contribution to society and reflected their own passions and ambitions.

Hard to say if anything like this is even possible at a societal level (although technically I have no doubt this could be done).   

Our nature is the same as every other organism that has ever lived on this planet and it hasn't evolved at all. 

I suspect you do not buy evolution, but the science shows that species do indeed evolve behaviorally.    Human beings are a synthesis of pair-bonding and tournament mammals.   Pair-bonding mammals are typified by male and female being close in size and strength and work together to raise the offspring.   Tournament species, in contrast, have dominant males who are far bigger than females.   Behavior there is that the dominant males do all the procreating and spend zero time helping to raise the offspring (instead he spends his time beating up the other males).

One can (and quite a few people do) trace through the Phylogenetic tree and see the evolution of behavior of groups to see how behavior evolves.   Indeed, you mentioned altruism.   Altruism has an impact on the survival of a species.   This all depends on circumstances, but a species that is naturally altruistic (e.g. female caring for and feeding the offspring of other females) might have a survival advantage over those who only care about their own offspring.   If so, the generations that follow will all be inherently altruistic creatures.   Altruism is something that is held to have evolved.   

From what you've said, it seems that you think capitalism is a better, more realistic way to go.

It is more realistic because it actually exists.  I know capitalism works and I suspect we could evolve it to work better (I hope so since it seems to be devolving into a very bad form).   I think socialism could work but there has never been a nation that had a socialist economy (not just in name only) so we have nothing to go on.

But I'm sure you'd agree that there's tons of problems with it as well. The most obvious is the ridiculous concentration of wealth and power in the hands of a few. Personally, a realistic estimation of human nature tells me that capitalism, combined with certain socialized programs is about the best we can do. At least on a national level. 

Exactly.  The most critical problem with capitalism is the concentration of power.   Oddly enough, Marx was one of the key figures in defining capitalism (he spent almost all of his time talking about the problems with capitalism compared to putting forth a good plan for socialism and almost no time spent on communism).   Marx actually held that capitalism would create such gross class disparities that it would crumble under its own weight.   He then envisioned the workers revolting and taking control of industry and developing a working democratic system of workers in cooperation.   His vision was that this would evolve over time to the point where the systemic cooperation was so great that there would be no need for the concept of a state.   His prediction clearly has not happened (nor do I think that actual prediction ever will happen).

I could almost wish for a solar event large enough to destroy the electrical infrastructure of the world. Not that I hope for the likely billions of deaths that would result, but rather, that it would be a reset back to what was actually important. I'm sure there would be many different groups with different models of governing themselves but I think that in some of them, socialism would have the best chance of being an actual thing. A community small enough where everyone knew and cared about everyone else and their well being. 

We started off as a species of hunter / gatherers.   Tribes of human beings moving about living off the land and trying to stay alive.   We eventually learned about agriculture and thus began the age of settling since a ready food source was now available.   It is at this point in our history we started to see problems.   The reason is that all of a sudden we had property.   As hunter/gatherers there really were no possessions.   In an agrarian environment land, food, livestock, homes, etc. were now valuable commodities that others might want for themselves.   A great little stead down by the river makes for nice life but it must be defended from others who want what you have.

The point is that the little community thing seems to work up to a point.   As we evolve possessions things get complicated.   As we grow in size (community size) we see the emergence of politics.   I have to wonder that if we started all over if we would just end up going through the very same steps.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.6.8  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.7    2 weeks ago
That actually is an argument that socialism would do better.   If we were to fast forward to what most socialists seem to have in mind, the world consists of a network of communities each with democratic rule.

That's kind of my point, though. What these socialists you speak of do is "imagine" some state. Unfortunately, it assumes a population that thinks along the lines of their imaginings. Something that will never be, in my estimation.

For example, there would be no Koch or Soros who have clustered enormous wealth.

Perhaps, but I have serious doubts about such. Historically, those who have tried the socialist path, it seems to me, have simply traded one power structure for another. The Koch's and Soros use money to influence. But the historical examples to date replace these people of wealth with people such as Beria, the head of Soviet internal security, if I remember correctly. If one puts forth the effort, one could produce a very entertaining reality show of the internal politics and depravity of the leadership of "socialist" societies. 

Of course, they aren't really socialist societies in the sense you and I are discussing, but that's more or less my point. It seems we aren't able to progress to something beyond what we have seen so far. So, while it is true we wouldn't see Koch's and Soros's, we'd see something much worse, as we have. 

Why would it be worse than what we see today in our system?

Well, from my perspective, with the system we have today, things do get done, and probably for less money. Take the space program for example. The race for the moon. Capitalist West and Communist East both desired to be the first there. Two systems but both went about it in the same manner. In other words, regardless of which side one refers to, it cost way more than it should have. 

But look at today. I could be wrong, but it seems obvious to me that private industry can put a package into orbit for a fraction of what government can. 

But perhaps what you are referring to is the clown show that is our government. Not being a political scientist I can't say my opinion counts for much but, it seems to me that, no matter the form of government, unless it is totalitarian, all governments devolve into what we see now. The only government that perhaps escape it are probably similar to North Korea. 

Although this seems silly, think of Star Trek.

Not really silly. If I have my author correct, Peter F. Hamilton, in one of his series, called what the Star Trek Federation had as a Post-Scarcity economy. An economy based on tech so advanced that no one wanted for anything or had to work if they didn't want to. (Of course, there were aliens always trying to screw it up) 

But even if such a state were desirable, which I have my doubts about, to get there requires a certain amount of altruism. More than what we see now. There are too few Jonas Salk's and too many people who want to be rich at any cost. But let's say that, somehow, in spite of all that we are today, we achieve such a state. Post-Scarcity economy. Did we get there because we are better, more advanced morally people? Or did some smart people figure some stuff out and now everyone gets to do what they want for nothing? Our lives are, arguably, better and easier than those lived by people a thousand years ago. Does that make us better human beings than they were? 

Imagine some event that wipes out 70% of the world's population and set our tech back 1,000 years. Further, let's say the remaining 30% are of western values and morals. Going forward, what do you suppose would happen? Their values and morals would be unchanged or that they would do whatever it took to survive, assuming scarce resources? The point is, we can't consider our values or morals, us, in other words, unless we would do what is right regardless of our technological capabilities. That's where Roddenberry gets it wrong, in my opinion. He confuses human evolution with technology. That because tech has evolved, then so have we. 

I suspect you do not buy evolution, but the science shows that species do indeed evolve behaviorally.

I have no set opinion on evolution except to say that it wasn't unguided. To my mind, it is equally glorious of God to have created the universe billions of years ago or ten thousand. That is all I have to say about that so don't bother to try drawing me into a debate on this. But if you wish to debate the evolution of behavior, I'll discuss that. My position is that we haven't evolved behaviorally in the slightest. This is because for us to have evolved behaviorally, we would act in a particular manner regardless of circumstances. Our behavior would be similar to an infant nursing. Something instinctual.

To my mind, our behavior hasn't changed in the slightest from what it was ten thousand years ago or even 100,000 years ago. That is, I mean to say that unless one uses reason, one's actions will not differ from what they were at any point in the past. If evolution is correct, then our nature, unless we work to overcome it cognitively, is self-interest. It always was and always will be, left to ourselves. If or behavior were a product of evolution I would expect a change in behavior that wasn't based on reason. We would just naturally behave differently. 

It is more realistic because it actually exists.

But why does it exist rather than the pure form of socialism? Because it better reflects the nature of humans? More, it better reflects the reality that one's reward should be commensurate with effort and talent? Within reason, of course, which it lacks today in so many cases. 

I know capitalism works and I suspect we could evolve it to work better (I hope so since it seems to be devolving into a very bad form).

Agreed.

I think socialism could work but there has never been a nation that had a socialist economy (not just in name only) so we have nothing to go on.

Again, agreed. But I don't think it is something we will ever see because of our nature. 

Exactly. The most critical problem with capitalism is the concentration of power.

Yes. But I think we end up with the same problem with attempting socialism, but with worse results. Again, it isn't because there's something wrong with the idea in general, but rather, the nature of human beings. Capitalism works better because it fits our nature, to oversimplify. Socialism doesn't work because it pretends humans are other than what they are. 

As hunter/gatherers there really were no possessions.

I doubt that is true. Two hunter/gatherer groups would undoubtedly disagree as to who had the right to territory. As idealistic as we like to make Native American history to have been, they certainly had definite ideas about ownership. 

The point is that the little community thing seems to work up to a point. As we evolve possessions things get complicated. As we grow in size (community size) we see the emergence of politics. I have to wonder that if we started all over if we would just end up going through the very same steps.

Agree to a point but it is your point about possessions that causes me to deny our evolution morally. If we had evolved, it seems to me that such a thing would not be complicated. Yet we still fight over it the same as we always have. So it seems to me.

So far, God has not been necessary to discuss this. I could continue to discuss this without mention of God. However, I mention God because all of what we are discussing here is why I put my faith in Him. That is, I am speaking in the sense of insight of who I am, personally. I look at history and the present day and wonder, why is this the best we can do? Why aren't we better? Why do we ourselves cause so much suffering? I think the Bible has the answers to that question.

To be clear, until now I haven't written one word that was dictated by my faith. My opinion on the subject of socialism and all the rest is simply my observations concerning the subject. It is simply what I see as a human being. I don't feel we, as a species, can actually change ourselves. Or, to put it another way, it's too hard to overcome our nature on a societal level. I see no hope of anything different than what it has always been. So I put my faith in God and the Bible. In the case of the Bible, it isn't so much about doing what it says to do, but the "why" behind why we should. It is a cognitive change in my behavior, not an evolutionary one. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.9  author  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.6.8    2 weeks ago
Historically, those who have tried the socialist path, it seems to me, have simply traded one power structure for another.

Nobody has tried the socialist path.    Lenin would have been the closest, but he started (necessarily due to the conditions of Russia at the time) with authoritarian rule.   He created soviets and tried to get worker participation but Russia was not ready for anything remotely close to socialism.  Lenin finally realized this but then soon died.   What has been tried is authoritarian rule, that is not at all what Marx had described.

The closest thing to 'socialism' that has been tried at a significant level is Mondragon, but that is just a portion of socialism (workplace democracy) so it hardly counts as an economic system.

Perhaps, but I have serious doubts about such. 

Per the theory.

But look at today. I could be wrong, but it seems obvious to me that private industry can put a package into orbit for a fraction of what government can. 

You are comparing private sector to public sector.   In your analogy you have socialism as the public sector.   In what I have described socialism would be the private sector.   The businesses are run by the people, not by the government.

Not being a political scientist I can't say my opinion counts for much but, it seems to me that, no matter the form of government, unless it is totalitarian, all governments devolve into what we see now. 

Historically, there are those who seize power, those who follow those who seize power and those who are oppressed by those in power.   We can go back to ancient times with slaves but lets just go back to Feudalism.  The lords owned the lands, granted fiefs to vassals in return for fealty (e.g. military support) and allowed the serfs to work the land.   Serfs worked the lord's lands as payment and then worked an allocation for their own purposes.

Mercantilism provided some freedom by the creation of the merchant class who made a living in trade.   The merchants eventually become the power brokers with their employees (and slaves) providing the labor.

Capitalism replaced mercantilism and (with the substantial aid of industrial technology) enabled an owner (of the means of production and distribution) to hire employees to work the means and produce goods for sale.   The owner received all the profits (and took all the risks) and uses same as the owner wishes.   

Feudalism was brutal and the serfs were, in effect, slaves of the lords (and vassels).    Mercantilism enabled lower class individuals to break free of their positions by birth through economic prowess in trade.  Capitalism formalized the notions of business and enabled anyone with an idea and the ability to secure capital (key) the means to create the business, compete and grow.

The theme here is that as we have evolved historically, our economic systems have moved as well.   There is always an owner in control but the worker has evolved from serf (effectively slave) to employee (with the possibility of moving to owner).   The economic freedom and power of the worker has trended to more freedom and power over time.   It is thus not unusual to expect that this would continue.   So the rhetorical question is, what would be the nature of economic freedom and power and the next stage of worker evolution?

...  to get there requires a certain amount of altruism.

Right.   As I have noted, this is one of the key points that society must evolve before something like socialism (core form) would be even possible.  But, as I noted, the evolution would also need to produce a society where the individuals saw the big picture and are not strictly short-term.   These are actively involved, aware people who make decisions for their individual benefit AND for the benefit of the community, region, nation.   As I noted, that is not how individuals in society operate today.   Thus, in my opinion, I do not expect to see any nation that actually has a socialist economic system.

The nations that are deemed socialist (loose, slogan level language) are actually based on capitalism (individual capitalism, state capitalism and hybrids such as China).   

That's where Roddenberry gets it wrong, in my opinion. He confuses human evolution with technology. That because tech has evolved, then so have we. 

I see no reason to presume Roddenberry was strictly thinking that human beings evolved simply because of technology.   But Star Trek was just an analogy I offered to get the point across as to the kind of utopic world Marx had envisioned.   The point is that it is a world where needs are provided by technology and people are free to contribute to society according to their ambitions and skills.    People live to work, not work to live.   

My position is that we haven't evolved behaviorally in the slightest. This is because for us to have evolved behaviorally, we would act in a particular manner regardless of circumstances. Our behavior would be similar to an infant nursing. Something instinctual.

Well there is an entire field of biology that deals with behavior that utterly disagrees with your position.   My comments were reflecting some of their findings.

But why does it exist rather than the pure form of socialism? Because it better reflects the nature of humans? More, it better reflects the reality that one's reward should be commensurate with effort and talent? Within reason, of course, which it lacks today in so many cases. 

Because of what I have described.   Simply stated, socialism (core) cannot exist until a society is sophisticated enough to produce the needs for all its members.   That necessarily means it has technologically evolved into a mature industrial nation.    Second, socialism (core) cannot exist unless the people themselves want it and are culturally ready to be actively engaged in the democratic running of the socio-economic system.   This means being informed and active in the democratic running of the workplace (the source of income) and the administration of their local communities, regions and the nation itself.   

Nowadays we have nations that can satisfy the industrial part.   But I am not aware of any that are culturally (societal evolution) inclined to operate as the controlling demos.   I suspect that if that were to happen, it will be well after we are all gone.

Capitalism works better because it fits our nature, to oversimplify. Socialism doesn't work because it pretends humans are other than what they are. 

Again, my point is that humans operating in society necessarily will have evolved before socialism makes sense.   If we truly are only what we see and that our species will always be one where individuals have primarily local, short-term concerns and thus minimal altruism then socialism IMO will never work.   Note, however, Mondragon as an example of human beings working together in a manner that suggests we are indeed capable of reciprocal altruism, awareness, beyond local thinking and cooperative for the better good.   So I am not ready to deem that societal evolution is done and this is the best we can ever be in terms of working together as intelligent interdependent individuals.

Two hunter/gatherer groups would undoubtedly disagree as to who had the right to territory. 

Hunter/gatherers were nomadic.   You are thinking of the agrarian stage (the next one) when you think of territory.

If we had evolved, it seems to me that such a thing would not be complicated. Yet we still fight over it the same as we always have. So it seems to me.

Evolution can take a long time.   It is a mistake to look at any species at a particular point and argue that because this is the level to which it has evolved that it is unlikely it will evolve further.

Or, to put it another way, it's too hard to overcome our nature on a societal level.

I agree.   The societal evolution would be a natural progression.   As I noted, if it happens a certain way then that enabled socialism.   If not, then I would say socialism is not possible.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.6.10  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.9    2 weeks ago
Again, my point is that humans operating in society necessarily will have evolved before socialism makes sense.

I think this sums up the main point about socialism that we are discussing and I agree with you. We would need to be something other than what we currently are, with notable exceptions on very small scales and limited application, such as Mondragon, as you mentioned. 

I think, though, where we may disagree is the idea that we've actually progressed, a necessary component for socialism to work. You mention the transitions through early forms of societal organizations ranging from primitive hunter/gatherer through feudal, mercantilism and the rest as forms of evolution. I suppose they are, but what kind of evolution? Was it the nature of man that changed or was it how man satisfied his nature that changed? It seems to me it was the latter. Can that kind of evolution lead to socialism? A form of government that seems to require a greater altruism than we now possess? That isn't really a question I expect you to answer. It's more an expression of my own thoughts about what I see. 

To be honest, I don't think so. As you say, no truly socialist society has ever really been attempted in the truest sense. But there have been attempts in that direction at least and they all failed miserably and with great cost to life and liberty. Even though they may have every intention of an actual socialist society, it always will, I think, devolve into an authoritarian dictatorship because true socialism would be too much like herding cats, at least today. Some issue would invariably come up where one faction would feel justified in seizing power and forcing the others. Speaking simply of today, I think you would probably agree with that. 

But you mention that evolution may allow us to actually one day to attempt it. Perhaps, but I think it would depend on what evolves. I don't think our tech is what needs to evolve but what is in the heart and mind of humanity. Do you see any evidence of those evolving? And, I'm not sure what you mean by "evolving" in this context. A change in brain structure that leads to something more altruistic or simply the evolution of thought and understanding? I do see evolution in thought and understanding. Great things have been done because of it. Yet even so, it is so often drug back down by our nature. (I hate sounding so pessimistic and negative. I actually have a lot of hope, but I think it helps to see things realistically)

So, to sum up my point of view on this, I don't think socialism is a bad idea as an idea. It would probably be pretty cool in a society where every individual lacked for nothing (Star Trek). But perhaps socialism can't happen until the society reaches such a tech level? I don't know. While it might be a nice idea to think about, though, trying to implement it for the foreseeable future would be bad in my opinion. It will not fare any better than it already has. If it could work today, I don't think anything much larger than a village would succeed for long. 

Hunter/gatherers were nomadic. You are thinking of the agrarian stage (the next one) when you think of territory.

No, I was thinking what you were. Even though they were nomadic, they still had a territory, or range if you prefer, through which they moved and to which they stuck to unless conditions forced them out. That was what I was referring to. 

Well, this has been a great discussion. I really enjoyed this one, TiG. Truly. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.11  author  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.6.10    2 weeks ago
Was it the nature of man that changed or was it how man satisfied his nature that changed? It seems to me it was the latter. Can that kind of evolution lead to socialism? A form of government that seems to require a greater altruism than we now possess? That isn't really a question I expect you to answer. It's more an expression of my own thoughts about what I see. 

Well I would imagine that would be a bear of a question to answer.   One thing I can report is that science most definitely has found that behavior is heritable and that behavior is absolutely influenced over generations by environment.  

Even though they may have every intention of an actual socialist society, it always will, I think, devolve into an authoritarian dictatorship because true socialism would be too much like herding cats, at least today.

You are still thinking in top-down terms, as if leaders would come in and transform a society into one based on socialism.   I do not think that would ever work.   To me, socialism necessarily comes from the bottom up and that means an evolutionary approach where both the society (culture, norms, practices) and the infrastructure (technology, law, financial systems, voting systems, etc.) has become something very different from what we have today.

Socialism = the people are in control = impetus comes naturally from the people.  It will either happen by virtue of the will of the people, or it will not happen.  IMO.

Perhaps, but I think it would depend on what evolves.

Crucially.

But perhaps socialism can't happen until the society reaches such a tech level? 

We would need a system where the needs can be covered.   For example, the technology (including the financial aspects) would be sophisticated enough to ensure that everyone at a minimum has a decent standard of living, education, healthcare, etc.   There would not be any political wrangling about this because everyone would say 'well of course everyone has these basics'.   And that means that funding is not an issue (otherwise there would be opposition; after all, those who oppose free tuition for all do so on the basis of having to pay for it, not because they want to deny education to people).

But, then again, even with all this cool technology and resources aplenty, the people also have to be inclined to be actively involved and understand that their individual needs are important but that the needs of society are also important.   Most people today intellectually get that, but in practice their decisions are local and short-term.

Well, this has been a great discussion.

Agreed.   Thoughtful sharing of perspectives and information.   

 
 
 
Drakkonis
1.6.12  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @1.6.11    2 weeks ago
It will either happen by virtue of the will of the people, or it will not happen.  IMO.

I agree. 

But, then again, even with all this cool technology and resources aplenty, the people also have to be inclined to be actively involved and understand that their individual needs are important but that the needs of society are also important. Most people today intellectually get that, but in practice their decisions are local and short-term.

Also agree. And this is the key, I think, as to whether socialism would work or not. Would individuals in a truly socialistic society who's basic needs were freely available be satisfied with a basic level of subsistence, regardless of how lavish it might be, or would they demand something more? What might happen to humanity as a whole in a society where work was voluntary and not a necessity? To be honest, although I have to work, I'm comfortably well off. I have plenty of free time. I find that I spend too much time entertaining myself rather than improving myself. I wonder what I would do with the same level of support I have now or better (win a lottery) if I didn't have to work? What would I do with my time? What would the majority of people do? 

So many if's. So many possibilities. It seems like most of them depend on putting others before oneself. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
1.6.13  author  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @1.6.12    2 weeks ago
Would individuals in a truly socialistic society who's basic needs were freely available be satisfied with a basic level of subsistence, regardless of how lavish it might be, or would they demand something more?

The idea is that the basic needs is the default and that people can always apply themselves and get more.   In other words, this is not an egalitarian concept where everyone has the same or equivalent lifestyles.   It is more equal opportunity with unequal results.

I wonder what I would do with the same level of support I have now or better (win a lottery) if I didn't have to work? 

We are all different.   Some people go into retirement (for example) and just goof off.   They tend to wither away quickly.   Others use retirement as the opportunity to learn, to travel, to have fun, to explore hobbies, to enjoy family, etc.

 
 
 
It Is ME
2  It Is ME    3 weeks ago

"Democratic socialism is a political philosophy that advocates political democracy alongside a socially owned economy,with an emphasis on workers' self-management and democratic control of economic institutions within a market or some form of a decentralized planned socialist economy"

That is the "Socialism" being thrown about as a good thing in this country, and that type of "Socialism" is what folks "DON'T want !

And don't tell me this isn't what is being constantly proposed by the left.

Folks can't even Manage their own friggin selves (reference the ones that want More Big Gov. to run their lives), and the likes of the ones running to be President on the Liberal side, wanting what I show above ….. as a good thing ?

Who wants a "STUPIDASS" running things over the already "dumb" that run it now !

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  It Is ME @2    3 weeks ago
And don't tell me this isn't what is being constantly proposed by the left.

You think people who are talking about socialism are focused on workplace democracy?

Who wants a "dumber" running things over the already "dumb" that run it now !

Could you be more vague please?


If anything, people think socialism = getting free stuff from the government.    They are thinking redistribution of wealth, social democracy, etc.

But the point of this article is that now we have a senator putting forth a resolution on a vague meme.   

 
 
 
It Is ME
2.1.1  It Is ME  replied to  TᵢG @2.1    3 weeks ago
You think people who are talking about socialism are focused on workplace democracy?

Nope …. But I am. But I actually read things. jrSmiley_13_smiley_image.gif  

Socialism comes in many forms … wouldn't you say ?

A bit of socialism does work. Much socialism doesn't.

"Could you be more vague please?"

Your smart. You knew what I was speaking of.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.1.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  It Is ME @2.1.1    3 weeks ago
You knew what I was speaking of.

I have no idea what you meant.

Socialism comes in many forms … wouldn't you say ?

Pretty much the point of the article.   The word 'socialism' means so many contradictory things that it is virtually meaningless.   Deeming anything that people label as 'socialism' a threat is ridiculous.   The fact that this is now in a proposed Senate resolution takes these meme fear to a new level of ridiculous.

 
 
 
It Is ME
2.1.3  It Is ME  replied to  TᵢG @2.1.2    3 weeks ago
I have no idea what you meant.

"Folks" that can't run their own finances, are going to do better than the one they work for ?

REALLY ? jrSmiley_97_smiley_image.gif

Get it now ?

"Deeming anything that people label as 'socialism' a threat is ridiculous."

No it's not.

Listen and comprehend what those running on the Democrat side are saying....and then get back to me.

"The fact that this is now in a proposed Senate resolution takes these meme fear to a new level of ridiculous."

Gotta start somewhere, when those running for President on the left propose what they are proposing. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.1.4  author  TᵢG  replied to  It Is ME @2.1.3    3 weeks ago
Gotta start somewhere, when those running for President on the left propose what they are proposing. 

The point of this article is to not just cry 'socialism! socialism! .... bad, bad' but instead to point out the specific issue of concern and make a pointed argument as to why it is bad.

For example, if one disagrees with providing ways for more qualified students to get a college education on the basis that it is too much statism then make the specific argument rather than merely cry 'socialism ... bad!'.   (Especially since statism and socialism are very different concepts and public education —even if funded by the state— is not socialism any more than it is capitalism.)

 
 
 
It Is ME
2.1.5  It Is ME  replied to  TᵢG @2.1.4    3 weeks ago
bad, bad' but instead to point out the specific issue of concern and make a pointed argument as to why it is bad.

I already did. jrSmiley_88_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
2.1.6  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @2.1.4    3 weeks ago

OMG, TiG....you want people to use their heads! What is wrong with you?

 
 
 
r.t..b...
2.1.7  r.t..b...  replied to  TᵢG @2.1.2    3 weeks ago
The fact that this is now in a proposed Senate resolution takes these meme fear to a new level of ridiculous.

While meaningful and constructive legislation dies in committee and/or is denied even a vote. The partisan dysfunction is past ridiculous, it is unconscionable. 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2  Jack_TX  replied to  It Is ME @2    3 weeks ago
And don't tell me this isn't what is being constantly proposed by the left.

What is being proposed by "the left" is generally limited to "getting other people to pay your bills" socialism....which is why it has appeal.

 
 
 
It Is ME
2.2.1  It Is ME  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2    3 weeks ago
What is being proposed by "the left" is generally limited to "getting other people to pay your bills" socialism

Not limited.... but it is some of what is being proposed by the Candidates on the Left. A "Little" bit more each time they speak.

They even want the extra frosting on top too. 

I think they call that "Bribing" for votes.

I hear that "Bribes" are against the "LAW" !

 
 
 
Ozzwald
2.2.2  Ozzwald  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2    3 weeks ago

What is being proposed by "the left" is generally limited to "getting other people to pay your bills" socialism....which is why it has appeal.

I thought Trump was paying the soy farmers' bills.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.3  Jack_TX  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.2    3 weeks ago
I thought Trump was paying the soy farmers' bills.

Farm subsidies predate Trump by several decades.

They still don't equate to actual socialism.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
2.2.4  Ozzwald  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.3    3 weeks ago
Farm subsidies predate Trump by several decades.

I specifically said soy bean, are you refusing to read that part?  Does responding to my specific comment undermine your ability to justify Trump making soy bean farmers part of a government socialist program?

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.5  Jack_TX  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.4    3 weeks ago
I specifically said soy bean, are you refusing to read that part?  

Why would soybean subsidies be different from corn subsidies?  Or wheat?  Or cotton?  Or any of the other things we pay farmers not to grow?

Does responding to my specific comment undermine your ability to justify Trump making soy bean farmers part of a government socialist program?

I'm refusing to play your infantile game of "but Trump".  I don't like Trump.  I didn't vote for Trump.  But the bullshit hysteria around everything he does like he's Satan incarnate is the ridiculous nonsense of the intellectually feeble.

Farm subsidies are not socialist.  They weren't socialist when Jimmy Carter was signing the checks, and they're not socialist now.  That's not a difficult concept to grasp for those who are able to put hysteria aside.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
2.2.6  Ozzwald  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.5    3 weeks ago
Why would soybean subsidies be different from corn subsidies?  Or wheat?  Or cotton?  Or any of the other things we pay farmers not to grow?

Because we're talking about soy bean, anything else is off topic.

I'm refusing to play your infantile game of "but Trump".  I don't like Trump.  I didn't vote for Trump.

It's not a game, you are complaining about 1 thing, but allowing it as long  as your BFF Trump also does it.  The correct term is hypocritical, and that is why you are squirming around trying to deflect.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.7  author  TᵢG  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.6    3 weeks ago

(This is starting to become unnecessarily personal.)

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.8  Jack_TX  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.6    2 weeks ago
Because we're talking about soy bean, anything else is off topic.

That's ridiculous.

It's not a game, you are complaining about 1 thing, but allowing it as long  as your BFF Trump also does it.  The correct term is hypocritical, and that is why you are squirming around trying to deflect.

That's even more ridiculous.  And a bit sad, actually.

 
 
 
Tessylo
2.2.9  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2    2 weeks ago

It's nonsense.  We don't want anyone to pay our bills.  We do that on our own.  

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.10  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.9    2 weeks ago
It's nonsense.  We don't want anyone to pay our bills.  We do that on our own. 

Outstanding. 

So if single payer healthcare includes a provision that we're all going to pay our own share...which amounts to about $10,000 per person per year...you're still in support when your taxes go up by $10k for every member of your family?

And this would mean you oppose the student loan forgiveness programs proposed by several Democratic candidates.  Those bills belong to those people, and we're all paying our own bills, after all.

Out of curiosity, if we're all going to pay our own bills, why do we need to increase taxes on the wealthy?

 
 
 
Tessylo
2.2.11  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.10    2 weeks ago

Stop putting words in my mouth.  And twisting them.  And talking down to me.  You're quite the pompous . . . 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.12  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @2.2.11    2 weeks ago
Stop putting words in my mouth.  And twisting them.  And talking down to me.  You're quite the pompous . . . 

Just asking questions.  Sorry if they're inconvenient.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.13  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.10    2 weeks ago
you're still in support when your taxes go up by $10k

Look, no one knows exactly how much per person a single payer would costs.  However, let's look at your 10K example.  How much do you pay in premiums and co-pays each year?  (For the record, I have Tricare -- no premiums and I am capped at 3000/year in copays.)

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.14  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.13    2 weeks ago
Look, no one knows exactly how much per person a single payer would costs. 

It's not that hard to estimate.

However, let's look at your 10K example.  How much do you pay in premiums and co-pays each year?  (For the record, I have Tricare -- no premiums and I am capped at 3000/year in copays.)

My situation is atypical, but I'm happy to talk about it.  My premiums for a family of four run $1408/mo (we have a grandfathered, non-employer plan).  Our out of pocket is capped at $6k for the family.  

The average annual premium for employer plans, which is probably a better number for this discussion, is $18,687 for a family.  The employee pays $5218 of that.  

So in my case, I'd be looking at expenses going from $22k at worst to $40k automatic.  The average family of four would be looking at a $35k increase...  IF we're all paying our own way.

But the real attraction of single payer is getting somebody ELSE to pay it.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.15  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.14    2 weeks ago
But the real attraction of single payer is getting somebody ELSE to pay it.

For lower income people I am sure that is all they are thinking.

For others looking at this more in terms of the nation as a whole, the attraction would be more of having a means to get necessary medical care when needed and not denied due to personal wealth.   Healthy people will pay and not get much out of the system.   Unhealthy people will pay and get more than they could afford on their own.   

The challenge is to devise a system that is systemically cost effective with good quality.   That, to me, means medical decisions are made by the doctor and patient subject to medical board oversight (medical professionals, not bureaucrats).  It also means that patients using the service are paying into the system as they use it (in addition to the base operational tax revenue).   In addition, higher tiers of service should be available for those who are willing to pay more.   We need to maintain a market for medical and technological advancement.

On the more promising side, if we were to ever seriously attempt to make this happen in the USA, we would have the opportunity to create a federated system of standardization which could enable economies of scale in information management, use of equipment, research, drugs, etc.   Our system has plenty of waste that (at least in theory) could be re-purposed into effective healthcare.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.16  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.15    2 weeks ago
For others looking at this more in terms of the nation as a whole, the attraction would be more of having a means to get necessary medical care when needed and not denied due to personal wealth. 

Which is still transferring costs away from certain people on to other people.  So still pretty much "getting somebody else to pay for it".

Healthy people will pay and not get much out of the system.   Unhealthy people will pay and get more than they could afford on their own. 

True, but proponents are not talking about this in terms of risk management.

On the more promising side, if we were to ever seriously attempt to make this happen in the USA, we would have the opportunity to create a federated system of standardization which could enable economies of scale in information management, use of equipment, research, drugs, etc.

We can do that for free with very simple legislation.  But that's not on the table because it doesn't address the core value of "getting somebody else to pay" for healthcare.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.17  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.16    2 weeks ago
Which is still transferring costs away from certain people on to other people.  So still pretty much "getting somebody else to pay for it".

Every socio-economic/political system transfers costs from some to benefit others.    Even if taxation were fixed:  everyone pays $5,000 per year regardless of income (ridiculous, but stated to make a point) we would still see a transfer of costs from some to benefit others because of the way the aggregate tax revenue is spent.   When tax dollars go to build infrastructure that benefits those who use the infrastructure and those who do not use it did not get much for their money.

Explain to me how any civil society can ensure that we do not have the situation where nobody ever pays for something that benefits someone else.   I say it is impossible (and not desirable either).

True, but proponents are not talking about this in terms of risk management.

I know, it is more about getting benefits and class envy.   I tend to focus on what I think is good for the nation and tune out the politics and associated nonsense.

We can do that for free with very simple legislation. 

It is far more complex than that, but I agree it is quite doable.   That said, I do not think our current crop of politicians can manage their way out of a paper bag so I have very little expectation that anything of value will come in the near future.

 
 
 
Don Overton
2.2.18  Don Overton  replied to  It Is ME @2.2.1    2 weeks ago

56c5694a7d12666dc59a71d61d2dda040c837d82

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.19  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.14    2 weeks ago
going from $22k at worst to $40k

That is not quite accurate.  In Canada. there are no co-pays, etc.  You simply go the doctor when you need to and they bill the government.  So, your costs would go from 22K to 10K, a savings of 12K.  (On the other hand, my would go from a max of 3K to 10K.  Yes, it will cost me more but it is worth it.  No one should ever have to choose between the physical well-being and their fiscal well-being.)

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.20  Karri  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.15    2 weeks ago
 Our system has plenty of waste that (at least in theory) could be re-purposed into effective healthcare.

How true!  

Medicare has a 5% overhead while the private insurance industry balked at being limited to a 20% overhead.  There would be a lot of savings right there.

Another area where we could save money is on billing.  Right now it takes a lot of people and a lot of time to know who to bill and whether a specific insurance is primary or secondary.

And, then, there is the fact that we pay twice as much as other countries on prescription drugs.  Certainly we could cut back on prescription prices!

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.21  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.16    2 weeks ago
Healthy people will pay and not get much out of the system. 

BTW, that  is exactly how private insurance works now.  It is pooled risk.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.22  author  TᵢG  replied to  Karri @2.2.20    2 weeks ago
Another area where we could save money is on billing.  Right now it takes a lot of people and a lot of time to know who to bill and whether a specific insurance is primary or secondary.

Economies of scale in the category of information and administration of same implemented in a federated system:  federal standards with distributed administration by the states (and regions even) following said standards.    Beyond that, simplification alone (fewer moving parts; fewer sets of inconsistent rules) opens up tons of opportunities for improving effectiveness with no loss of quality (and, frankly, a realistic expectation of improving quality).

And, then, there is the fact that we pay twice as much as other countries on prescription drugs.  Certainly we could cut back on prescription prices!

Part of the problem there is that we are funding the research.   If we get better prices then other nation will have to pay more (or some other clever mechanism so that the pharmaceutical industry cam deal with the revenue differential;  not leaving a little less profit off the table either - but we need the advanced research to remain a good business pursuit).

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.23  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.19    2 weeks ago
That is not quite accurate.

Except....it is..... and you're talking about a different thing.

  In Canada. there are no co-pays, etc.  You simply go the doctor when you need to and they bill the government.  So, your costs would go from 22K to 10K, a savings of 12K.  (On the other hand, my would go from a max of 3K to 10K.  Yes, it will cost me more but it is worth it.  No one should ever have to choose between the physical well-being and their fiscal well-being.)

In this conversation, we're talking about a program where everybody "pays their own way".  

You're talking about the main driver behind single-payer healthcare, which is the attempt to get somebody else to pay your bills.  The second main driver is appallingly terrible math.

Where do you imagine "the government" would get the $4+ trillion/yr it would need to pay those doctor bills?

If everybody kicks in their "fair share", that currently amounts to $10k for every man, woman and child in this country.  (It would rise substantially under a single payer program.)  Are you prepared to pay your "fair share"?

  

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.24  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.20    2 weeks ago
There would be a lot of savings right there.

How much?  Quantify "a lot" for us.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.25  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.23    2 weeks ago
single-payer health

Yes, this seed is about socialism and socialized medicine/insurance.  My example of the Canadian system is appropriate to the discussion.  (I would use the English system, too, but I don't know as much about it.

If everybody kicks in their "fair share", that currently amounts to $10k for every man, woman and child in this country. (It would rise substantially under a single payer program.) Are you prepared to pay your "fair share"?

I have already discussed this.  Yes, your taxes will go up but it would be more offset by the savings in health care costs (for most.)  As I said in @2.2.19, I would be one of the losers in this situation (because of my unique insurance position) and I would gladly do it.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.26  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.24    2 weeks ago
Quantify "a lot" for us.

From https://dplindbenchmark.com/healthcare-billing-process-the-cost-of-doing-business/

But what commonly goes unnoticed is that a good portion of the medical cost is NOT related to actual patient care, but rather, the cost it takes of collecting payments from the time a patient makes an appointment until the time the health provider receives payment for the services.


Researchers from Duke University and Harvard recently published a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) to determine administrative costs associated with billing and insurance-related activities at a large academic medical center using a certified electronic health record (EHR) system. Through numerous interviews with people involved at various points of the billing process – in addition to 34 doctors – they analyzed five types of “patient encounters” to calculate salary and overhead costs when developing billing costs to third-party payers and patients. The results are both interesting and troubling.


In just one year, researchers found the academic health system incurred a cost of $99,000 a year in billing and insurance-related activities just to collect payments for a SINGLE primary care doctor! Despite having a ‘certified’ EHR system, it appears the economies of scale in this large medical center are somewhat limited, as associated costs for all payer sources (Medicare, Medicaid, numerous health insurance carriers and individuals) provide challenging nuances on claim adjudication requirements.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.27  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.25    2 weeks ago
Yes, your taxes will go up but it would be more offset by the savings in health care costs (for most.)

Well first....they won't be offset because we'll lose the $1trillion plus employers currently pay into the system.  They pay four times as much into healthcare as they do into income tax, and that's based on pre-Trump-tax-cut figures.

Secondly, "more than offset" means that we're back to "other people paying their bills"...which is really what most "socialism" proponents care about exclusively.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.28  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.26    2 weeks ago

Billing does not go away with single payer.

Unless you intend to conscript all the doctors, seize all the hospitals and make them all government employees, you're going to have a billing department.

If you want to reduce billing costs, simply legislate a national billing standard so that all claims are billed on the same system using the same methods.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.29  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.27    2 weeks ago
They pay four times as much into healthcare as they do into income tax,

In other words, business expenses would also decrease.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.30  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.28    2 weeks ago
Billing does not go away with single payer.

As I stated, with only one "insurance", billing departments could be a lot smaller.  This, in itself, will result in savings.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.31  author  TᵢG  replied to  Karri @2.2.30    2 weeks ago

Indeed.

Standardization typically reduces complexity and enables higher economies of scale.   It is one of the major (and typically easiest) methods for improving cost-effectiveness.

In this case, it seems that we could substantially reduce complexity.   Nothing like trimming wasted effort.

But the standardization, done properly, could also improve the quality of operations.   Better quality at a lower cost.   That is the only advantage that I see of our current system ... plenty of low-hanging fruit opportunities for improvement.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.32  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.30    2 weeks ago
As I stated, with only one "insurance", billing departments could be a lot smaller.  This, in itself, will result in savings.

Are you familiar with how Medicare claims are filed, and how they coordinate with Medicare Supplement policies...which about 95% of senior citizens own?  

All we need to do is legislate a standardized claims process, much like that one, but with audit features so we don't lose 12% of claims to fraud or other improper payments like we do now.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.33  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.31    2 weeks ago
plenty of low-hanging fruit opportunities for improvement.

Yes.  There are.

Many of which don't actually require a dime of additional government expenditure.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.34  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.33    2 weeks ago
Many of which don't actually require a dime of additional government expenditure.

But offer (apparently) no political advantage and thus are never pursued.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.35  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.34    2 weeks ago
But offer (apparently) no political advantage and thus are never pursued.

Exactly.

 
 
 
Karri
2.2.36  Karri  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.27    one week ago
"more than offset" means that we're back to "other people paying their bills"

I think we may be talking about apples and oranges.  It seems you are talking government spending (please correct me if I am wrong) and I am talking about personal expenditures.  Government can save by efficiency of size (many of which I have already discussed) but individuals would have their health care dollars decrease.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.37  Jack_TX  replied to  Karri @2.2.36    one week ago
I think we may be talking about apples and oranges.  It seems you are talking government spending (please correct me if I am wrong) and I am talking about personal expenditures.  Government can save by efficiency of size (many of which I have already discussed) but individuals would have their health care dollars decrease.

So this particular part of the conversation started with me saying that most of the current crop of people calling themselves "socialists" are really only interested in "the type of socialism where somebody else pays their bills". (Which of course is not socialism, it's simply wealth redistribution.)

A liberal person took exception to this statement.  So I posed the question...OK then...are you willing to actually pay your own way on the government health insurance you all want us to have?  Currently in the US, we spend $10k for every person.  Therefore, her "fair share", would be $10k for every person in her family.

That's about where you came in.

Without question, the primary and almost exclusive attraction to single payer health care is that it transfers the cost to somebody ELSE.

This is even more obviously true of other "socialist" ideas like student loan forgiveness or free internet service or minimum basic income (none of which are actually socialist, either).

"The Government" is going to collect that money from somewhere, and those of us who already pay most of the taxes know all too well where that somewhere is.  In fact, single payer healthcare by itself will require the US Govt to double the tax revenue it currently collects.  

The new generation of entitled white "socialists" doesn't mind that...as long as somebody ELSE is paying.

The increased efficiencies you talk about can be accomplished with a simple law standardizing procedures.  You don't need to take away everybody's insurance to achieve that.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.38  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.37    one week ago
Without question, the primary and almost exclusive attraction to single payer health care is that it transfers the cost to somebody ELSE.

To me the positive benefits include:

  • Pooled risk
  • Opportunities for effectiveness through standardization and minimal redundancy
  • Basic coverage for everyone

But I am no fan of government run healthcare so I advocate for a system of government regulation and administration and private sector execution.

I know you two are on a slightly different track, so I am just chiming in.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.39  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.38    one week ago
To me the positive benefits include:
  • Pooled risk

Risk pools reach a critical mass where there isn't any appreciable benefit to making them larger.  Risk does not become substantially more predictable when the pool goes from 150 million to 300 million.  In theory we could use the increased leverage to negotiate hospital or physician costs down, but we show less than zero willingness to do that.  

  • Opportunities for effectiveness through standardization and minimal redundancy

This actually requires exceedingly little government spend.  Currently, Medicare claims are all submitted to a central database.  Medicare supplement companies access that database every night to collect claims on their policyholders.  If we extrapolated that nationwide, we could achieve standardization for the cost of server expansion.

We had a chance with the ACA to actually standardize coverage, but we left clueless people in charge of drafting it so we lost that opportunity.  No two "Silver" plans are ever alike.  But ALL Medicare Supplement "G" plans must be identical.  It was the easiest piece of low hanging fruit, and we just missed it.

  • Basic coverage for everyone

In real life, this is going to be unpopular with traditional liberals "Great White Hope" types, because it's going to actually require poor people to change behavior.  

The Census Bureau estimates that about 35-40% of people currently eligible for Medicaid are not signed up.  That's right....free health insurance...and they won't sign up.  About 6 million of those are children.  

The easiest, quickest way to solve that problem is to require people to enroll before they can obtain any other govt benefits.   The easier way still is to give them an income based voucher to use to buy private insurance....and then allow them to pick any of three or four standardized plans that would exist once we took care of the low hanging fruit problem we discussed earlier.

But I am no fan of government run healthcare so I advocate for a system of government regulation and administration and private sector execution.

There is almost no problem in healthcare we can't regulate away relatively simply, with minimal government involvement and comparatively little expense.  But most people understand so little about it, they don't see that.

I know you two are on a slightly different track, so I am just chiming in.

*thumbsup*

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.40  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.39    one week ago
Risk pools reach a critical mass where there isn't any appreciable benefit to making them larger.  Risk does not become substantially more predictable when the pool goes from 150 million to 300 million.  In theory we could use the increased leverage to negotiate hospital or physician costs down, but we show less than zero willingness to do that.  

That is a good thing.   It appears you are saying that with a typical variability in health care expenses, the optimal distribution is hit at 150 million (risk delta goes to zero).   That means we have upside for a more complex variability that would need a larger pool to hit zero risk delta.   

This actually requires exceedingly little government spend. 

Indeed, there is plenty of low-hanging fruit.

In real life, this is going to be unpopular with traditional liberals "Great White Hope" types, because it's going to actually require poor people to change behavior.  

Leading healthier lives is net good.   Using a system per its intent is a good thing.

There is almost no problem in healthcare we can't regulate away relatively simply, with minimal government involvement and comparatively little expense.

I think you are too optimistic here, but I agree in principle.   So much can be saved by simplification and standardization alone.   But remember that even when standardizing, there are technology factors at play.  Most systems are (still) not properly designed to scale (or adapt).   So even with a conceptually simpler, cleaner set of requirements, there is a ton of cost in getting the systems operational.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.41  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.40    one week ago
Leading healthier lives is net good.   Using a system per its intent is a good thing.

Well yeah.  But I was referring to incentives (both positive and negative) to get people to sign up for the existing programs for which they are already eligible.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.42  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.40    one week ago
So much can be saved by simplification and standardization alone.

Yes.  Which we can regulate with very little expense.

   But remember that even when standardizing, there are technology factors at play.  Most systems are (still) not properly designed to scale (or adapt).   So even with a conceptually simpler, cleaner set of requirements, there is a ton of cost in getting the systems operational.

"Ton" of cost is relative.  Getting the systems operational is absolutely not going to cost trillions of dollars, much less trillions of dollars annually.

Even if it was a $20billion project, that's less than what Medicare pays in fraudulent/improper payments every 90 days.

 
 
 
TᵢG
2.2.43  author  TᵢG  replied to  Jack_TX @2.2.42    one week ago

I should have written a ton of complexity.   The cost in dollars, per se, is not my concern but rather the complexity and risk of failure in the implementation.   The point is that even unifying standards and streamlining operations (net simplification) involves substantial complexity in implementation thus risk, time (and cost).   It is well worth doing, but it comes at a 'cost'.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
2.2.44  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.43    one week ago
I should have written a ton of complexity.

It's something all the providers and insurers are using already.  So basically we would be telling them "you know this system you use sometimes...use that all the time."

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3  Trout Giggles    3 weeks ago

Remember my hypothetical employee owned shoe factory? Would this law ban that type of business?

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @3    3 weeks ago
Socialism comes in many forms … wouldn't you say ?

It is just a resolution, but it seems this resolution would deem your business a threat.    

But it stupidly would deem existing factors in our system to be a threat.   The resolution is so ill-conceived it is essentially meaningless.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.1  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    3 weeks ago

Medicare and Social Security would be deemed a threat. Our interstate highway system would be a threat. Fire and police protection would be a threat. Public education would a threat.

I think this guy wants to turn this country into a total libertarian "paradise"

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.1    3 weeks ago

Spot on Ms. Giggles.

 
 
 
Heartland American
3.1.3  Heartland American  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    3 weeks ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.4  Trout Giggles  replied to  TᵢG @3.1.2    3 weeks ago

thank-you

 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.5  Jack_TX  replied to  TᵢG @3.1    3 weeks ago
The resolution is so ill-conceived it is essentially meaningless.

This.

Sadly, there is a lot of this kind of nonsense going around.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.6  Jack_TX  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.1    3 weeks ago
Medicare and Social Security would be deemed a threat. Our interstate highway system would be a threat. Fire and police protection would be a threat. Public education would a threat.

None of those things are actually socialist, despite what wild-eyed leftists would like you to believe.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.7  Trout Giggles  replied to  Jack_TX @3.1.6    3 weeks ago
wild-eyed leftists

Wild eyed leftists or wild-eyed rightists?

Have you seen some of the crap posted by extreme conservatives here?

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.8  Trout Giggles  replied to  Jack_TX @3.1.6    3 weeks ago

If they're not social programs then what are they?

Are they not funded by taxes? Granted, the taxes are payroll taxes, but taxes just the same.

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.9  author  TᵢG  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.8    3 weeks ago

They would be deemed a threat by the broad, vague concept of 'socialism' outlined in this resolution.    I wonder if the senator realizes that.

But, of course, social programs are not socialism.   If they were, then every nation on the planet with a capitalist economy would be considered 'socialist' because they all have public services / social programs. 

 
 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.11  Jack_TX  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.7    3 weeks ago
Wild eyed leftists or wild-eyed rightists?

Well...my personal experience is with leftists trying to convince everybody socialism is great with "public schools are good...and they're socialist"... or some other bullshit.

Have you seen some of the crap posted by extreme conservatives here?

Oh goodness yes.  There are not enough facepalms.  

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
3.1.12  Trout Giggles  replied to  Jack_TX @3.1.11    3 weeks ago

Thanks for the discussion, Jack. TiG and you gave me a pretty good explanation of why social programs are not socialism

 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.13  Jack_TX  replied to  Trout Giggles @3.1.8    3 weeks ago
If they're not social programs then what are they? Are they not funded by taxes? Granted, the taxes are payroll taxes, but taxes just the same.

Social programs are not social"ism", any more than providing for the common defense is socialism.

Socialism is the "collective" ownership of the means of production.  In real life, that almost always devolves to "government" ownership of the means of production.  

So in concrete terms...food stamps are not socialist.  If food stamps can only be used at government owned grocery stores which only buy food from government owned farms, while private grocery stores and farms are outlawed, THAT is socialism.

 
 
 
JBB
3.1.14  JBB  replied to  Jack_TX @3.1.13    3 weeks ago

Yet, for the overwhelming majority of us when using the common vernacular, "Socialism" generally means tax policies, laws and government programs meant to advance the interests of the poor, working classes and very small mom and pop businesses and "Capitalism" refers to programs and government policies which mostly favor the very wealthy and big corporations.

Which is why the battle politically is for the mushy middle who either cannot figure out where their best interests lay or who can be manipulated into voting against their own best interests. Greed and fear can be weaponized by professional propagandists to accomplish what should be impossible. Political messaging is a science which explains why the gop has gone all out to demonize the word "Socialism" by equating it with all of the excesses of Stalin and Mao...

Totalitarianism can spring from the left or the right. Today our current pressing threat is of creeping fascism clearly posed by homegrown rightwing white nationalist domestic terrorists. So, of course, that is the exact opposite of the sirens calls of fear and dread going out from the far right...and Trump!

Some may argue semantics until the proverbial cows come home. People are finnally seeing the bigger picture now and are not going to fall for the gop's fear mongering, again...

"Socialism" BOO! Did that scare you? "Socialism" BOO! What about now?

Meanwhile white nationalists march in our streets shouting racist memes!

 
 
 
†hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh
3.1.15  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh  replied to  JBB @3.1.14    3 weeks ago

The reality is America will never be a socialist state without a new constitution. You can't even amend it to make it work.

So all in all it's a boo hoo, there can't be socialism without a new constitution.

 
 
 
JBB
3.1.16  JBB  replied to  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh @3.1.15    3 weeks ago

Rreality is that all modern nations have aspects of what you call socialism.

BTW, where and when did I ever advocate for the state to confiscate all of means of production in the people's name?

If by America never becoming a socialist state you mean though to say that Americans will never enjoy a single payer state sponsored healthcare system then you are just blowing gas. That is what they said about Social Security and Medicare! George W Bush, Republican as they get, was who gave us Medicare prescription drug coverage. Is he a Socialist? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.17  author  TᵢG  replied to  †hε pε⊕pレε'š ƒïšh @3.1.15    3 weeks ago
... there can't be socialism without a new constitution

Why, specifically?

 
 
 
TᵢG
3.1.18  author  TᵢG  replied to  JBB @3.1.14    3 weeks ago
Yet, for the overwhelming majority of us when using the common vernacular, "Socialism" generally means tax policies, laws and government programs meant to advance the interests of the poor, working classes and very small mom and pop businesses

Thus that group uses 'socialism' to stand for 'public services' designed to enable the lower 'classes' in society?

To me that is:

  • statism
  • redistribution of wealth
  • social programs

Corresponds with the general structure and objectives of social democracy.


It is a mystery to me why the political movement nowadays is labeling itself 'socialism' (no doubt largely due to Bernie 2016) rather than 'social democracy'.   Social democracy exists in many nations where socialism (in its core form) does not exist anywhere.   Further the word 'socialism' carries all the baggage from failed nations who told the world that what they were implementing was 'socialism'.   Seems counter-productive to go with the 'socialism' label when social democracy a) is spot-on accurate and b) has a substantially better reputation and c) actually exists and can be scrutinized and possibly adapted.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.19  Jack_TX  replied to  JBB @3.1.14    3 weeks ago
Yet, for the overwhelming majority of us when using the common vernacular, "Socialism" generally means tax policies, laws and government programs meant to advance the interests of the poor, working classes and very small mom and pop businesses and "Capitalism" refers to programs and government policies which mostly favor the very wealthy and big corporations.

That may be true among leftists.  I disagree it's true of most Americans.

Which is why the battle politically is for the mushy middle who either cannot figure out where their best interests lay or who can be manipulated into voting against their own best interests.

Or...more accurately....who simply are too intelligent to agree with extremist horseshit.

Greed and fear can be weaponized by professional propagandists to accomplish what should be impossible.

Yes.  Look at the extremists on both edges.

Totalitarianism can spring from the left or the right.

Very true.

Today our current pressing threat is of creeping fascism clearly posed by homegrown rightwing white nationalist domestic terrorists. So, of course, that is the exact opposite of the sirens calls of fear and dread going out from the far right...and Trump!

Our current pressing threat is the galloping (not creeping) stupidity of the American people, who happily believe whatever their "side" says without ever understanding 5% of it.  That's true of horseshit like building a wall and it's true of horseshit like Medicare for all.  

Some may argue semantics until the proverbial cows come home. People are finnally seeing the bigger picture now and are not going to fall for the gop's fear mongering, again...

People are seeing many things.  "The bigger picture" is definitely not among them.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
3.1.20  Jack_TX  replied to  JBB @3.1.16    3 weeks ago
If by America never becoming a socialist state you mean though to say that Americans will never enjoy a single payer state sponsored healthcare system then you are just blowing gas. That is what they said about Social Security and Medicare! George W Bush, Republican as they get, was who gave us Medicare prescription drug coverage. Is he a Socialist? 

You do realize that Medicare is not a single payer state sponsored healthcare system, yes?  What exactly do you suppose Humana is selling on all those commercials every October?

You do realize that Medicare prescription drug coverage is purchased from private insurers, yes?

Or is this one of those "don't understand even 5%" times?

 
 
 
JBB
3.1.21  JBB  replied to  Jack_TX @3.1.20    3 weeks ago

I do understand though that if all you have are insults to my intelligence then you already lost the debate. Thanks though for reminding me why trying to engage you in honest debate is futile...

 
 
 
Mark in Wyoming
4  Mark in Wyoming    3 weeks ago

Brings up the question is it voluntary (supported by those that choose it) or forced (by government dictat or fiat ) that one has no choice over.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  Mark in Wyoming @4    3 weeks ago

I suspect the good senator is thinking of 'socialism' as primarily something that would be forced upon the people by an authoritarian state.   

 
 
 
Mark in Wyoming
4.1.1  Mark in Wyoming  replied to  TᵢG @4.1    3 weeks ago

I can see where someone could be opposed to that , just as I can see someone voluntarily participating in such a thing.

 
 
 
TᵢG
4.1.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Mark in Wyoming @4.1.1    3 weeks ago

In my opinion, if the USA (if any nation for that matter) ever has a system that technically meets the criteria of socialism (distributed economic control through democratic means rather than economic control by a minority), it will be the result of evolution AND because the people want the system.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5  Nerm_L    3 weeks ago

Banning supply side economics from the United States would be more useful.  That would ban Socialism along with crony capitalism.

 
 
 
Heartland American
5.1  Heartland American  replied to  Nerm_L @5    3 weeks ago
Supply - side economics is a macroeconomic theory arguing that economic growth can be most effectively created by lowering taxes and decreasing regulation, by which it is directly opposed to demand- side economics .
original

Supply-side economics - Wikipedia  it is demand side economics that is crony capitalism.  

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.1.1  Nerm_L  replied to  Heartland American @5.1    3 weeks ago
Supply-side economics is a macroeconomic theory arguing that economic growth can be most effectively created by lowering taxes and decreasing regulation, by which it is directly opposed to demand-side economics.

But that is lowering taxes and decreasing regulations on suppliers and not on consumers.  Supply-side economics focuses attention on the supply side of the marketplace while ignoring the consumer side of the marketplace.  The premise of supply-side economics is that enriching suppliers benefits consumers.

Crony capitalism is about a mutually advantageous relationship between business and government.  But business is always on the supply side of the marketplace.  So, crony capitalism is about a synergistic relationship between government (mostly politicians) and suppliers to promote governmental policy that enriches the supply side of the marketplace.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5    3 weeks ago

How can you say that supply side economics enables socialism?   Would you not have to first define what you mean by the term 'socialism' since the meaning of the term is all over the map?   Note that if one goes to the core of the meaning, socialism would be a society in which the people controlled their economy through democratic means.   

The tie between Supply-side and crony capitalism is obvious.   Eliminating SS would not eliminate socialism (core meaning) any more than it would eliminate capitalism (core meaning).

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.1  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2    3 weeks ago
How can you say that supply side economics enables socialism?   Would you not have to first define what you mean by the term 'socialism' since the meaning of the term is all over the map?   Note that if one goes to the core of the meaning, socialism would be a society in which the people controlled their economy through democratic means. 

Socialism is about collectivizing the means of production.  The means of production are on the supply side of the marketplace.  Socialism doesn't address organizing the means of consumption on the demand side of the marketplace.

Production is on the supply side of the marketplace.  All economic theories and policies focused on the supply side compete with each other.  But the purpose of all the competing supply side theories and policies is to enrich suppliers.  The claim made by the competing supply side theories and policies is that enriching the supply side of the marketplace will provide a benefit that trickles down to consumers.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.2  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.1    3 weeks ago

By that reasoning, SS ‘enables’ capitalism too.   So it has nothing to do with capitalism vs. socialism.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.3  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.2    3 weeks ago
By that reasoning, SS ‘enables’ capitalism too.   So it has nothing to do with capitalism vs. socialism.

Capitalism is about a free marketplace regulating the economy by providing incentives for investment, innovation, and production.  But that free marketplace regulates the economy through demand not through supply.

Consumers provide the incentives for capitalism and regulates the types of available products and prices for those products.

Collectivizing the means of production won't accomplish anything when what is produced is not consumed.  The demand side of the marketplace regulates the economy; not the supply side of the marketplace.

In a capitalist economy consumers provide the benefit that trickles down to suppliers.  The competition in a capitalist marketplace is between suppliers to obtain benefit from consumers.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.4  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.3    3 weeks ago

You are repeating yourself.

In a capitalist economy consumers provide the benefit that trickles down to suppliers.  The competition in a capitalist marketplace is between suppliers to obtain benefit from consumers.

Do you presume that a free market economy would not exist in a socialist economy?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.5  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.4    3 weeks ago
Do you presume that a free market economy would not exist in a socialist economy?

I presume Socialists mean what they say about collectivizing the means of production.  Socialism is one theory of supply side economics that competes with other theories of supply side economics.  And all theories of supply side economics are about enriching suppliers; often by using government to artificially manipulate and control the marketplace.

IMO no form of supply side economics is compatible with the free marketplace.  It seems all forms of supply side economics depend upon a close relationship between business and government to manipulate and control the marketplace.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.6  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.5    3 weeks ago

Then you do presume that a free market economy would not exist in a socialist economy.   A system in which businesses are predominantly owned by the workers and operate in a competitive free market is the most common theme of what socialists propose.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.7  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.6    3 weeks ago
Then you do presume that a free market economy would not exist in a socialist economy.   A system in which businesses are predominantly owned by the workers and operate in a competitive free market is the most common theme of what socialists propose.

Trying to put words in my mouth won't alter that I believe any form of supply side economics is incompatible with a free marketplace.

It doesn't matter who or how the supply side of the marketplace is owned.  A marketplace cannot be free when artificial manipulation and control is necessary.  Supply side economics depends upon artificial manipulation and control of the marketplace to enrich suppliers because suppliers cannot provide their own incentives for investment, innovation, or production.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.8  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.7    3 weeks ago
Trying to put words in my mouth won't alter that I believe any form of supply side economics is incompatible with a free marketplace.

I am not trying to put words in your mouth.  That is what I understood from what you wrote.

Nevermind, Nerm, I have lost interest.

 
 
 
MrFrost
5.2.9  MrFrost  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.7    3 weeks ago
Trying to put words in my mouth won't alter that I believe any form of supply side economics is incompatible with a free marketplace.

Anything would be better than trickle down economics, which every republican president since Reagan has been trying, and it never works. 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.10  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.8    3 weeks ago
I am not trying to put words in your mouth.  That is what I understood from what you wrote.

All forms of supply side economics, including Socialism, is incompatible with a free marketplace.

Workers cannot provide their own incentives to invest labor, develop skills, or produce any specific product.  Demand provides guidance and regulates the incentives for workers.  Workers owning the means of production won't alter the demand side of the economy regulating incentives for production.

A subsistence lifestyle would remove the need for a marketplace.  But demand still regulates the investment of labor and development of skills to produce what is needed to subsist.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.11  Nerm_L  replied to  MrFrost @5.2.9    3 weeks ago
Anything would be better than trickle down economics, which every republican president since Reagan has been trying, and it never works. 

Trickle down economics could possibly be made to work.  Government redistribution or guaranteed basic income are trickle down ideas.  But trickle down economics is impossible with small government.  Any sort of supply side economics requires a large and intrusive government to be self sustaining.

Supply side economics coupled with small government is really nothing more than a pirate economy that cannot sustain itself.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.12  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.10    3 weeks ago
All forms of supply side economics, including Socialism, is incompatible with a free marketplace.

You just accused me of putting words in your mouth and here you are again saying that a free marketplace is incompatible with socialism.   If socialism is incompatible with a free marketplace then a free marketplace cannot be part of socialism.   Right?  That is not putting words in your mouth, it is paraphrasing the point to ensure I understand what you mean.

This is why I tend to lose interest in our discussions.   If you are not even going to acknowledge basic points you just made then there is no point continuing.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.13  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.12    3 weeks ago
You just accused me of putting words in your mouth and here you are again saying that a free marketplace is incompatible with socialism.   If socialism is incompatible with a free marketplace then a free marketplace cannot be part of socialism.   Right?  That is not putting words in your mouth, it is paraphrasing the point to ensure I understand what you mean.

Socialism =/= free marketplace

Socialism cannot work with a free marketplace.  Socialism requires the government to artificially manipulate and control the marketplace (as does any other form of supply side economics).  

If Socialism was compatible with a free marketplace then Socialism would arise naturally without need for revolution or government intervention.  A collective should have an obvious advantage competing in a free marketplace.  

Capitalism emerged naturally from a free marketplace.  Capitalism is not an abstract economic theory that requires artificially manipulating and controlling the marketplace.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.14  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.13    3 weeks ago
Socialism =/= free marketplace

Yes, that is what I understood your opinion to be originally.

If Socialism was compatible with a free marketplace then Socialism would arise naturally without need for revolution or government intervention.  

I have stated quite a few times that I do not see how any nation could currently have a socialist economy.   The people would need to be culturally more directly involved and informed in what in their lives.   Until societies evolve to that point (if ever) I do not expect to see a major nation with a socialist economy.   But the fact that this has not happened yet does not translate into:  therefore socialism is incompatible with a free market.   Since socialism has not emerged at this point you could, with that reasoning, claim that socialism is incompatible with literally anything.

Logically, however, your position makes no sense to me.   There are plenty of socialist theories based on a free market.   They typically fall under the category of market socialism.   It should not be that hard to imagine a system where the people are democratically calling the shots in the workplace and the community.   Where individuals business (worker owned) are competing in a free marketplace and using their profits (surplus, if you will) to expand operations, fund research, and/or distribute earnings to the workers.    What about worker owned and operated businesses prevents market-based competition?    Do you presume that socialism means the economy is centrally planned?

Capitalism is not an abstract economic theory that requires artificially manipulating and controlling the marketplace.

Yup, apparently you have a command economy as part of your definition for socialism.   Just goes to show how the word 'socialism' is virtually meaningless.   One must get below the words to have any level of communication.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.15  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.14    3 weeks ago
Yup, apparently you have a command economy as part of your definition for socialism.   Just goes to show how the word 'socialism' is virtually meaningless.   One must get below the words to have any level of communication.

A central bank setting inflation targets and manipulating money supply and interest rates to meet that target is a command economy.  

That fault isn't with the definition of Socialism; the fault is with the definition of a command economy.  Government monetary and fiscal policy indirectly manipulate the economy to influence production, investment, prices, and incomes.  While that may not be as finely tuned as direct control of economic factors, the actions of central banks and government economic policy pursues the same purpose.

Today's government monetary and fiscal policy has been directed toward benefiting the supply side of the economy while claiming that provides a benefit which trickles down to consumers.  Business friendly government policy is about manipulating the marketplace for the benefit of business on the supply side of the marketplace.

A command economy can use either direct or indirect controls.  The United States currently has a command economy that benefits the supply side of the marketplace.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.16  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.15    3 weeks ago
A central bank setting inflation targets and manipulating money supply and interest rates to meet that target is a command economy.  

So you believe the USA (via the Fed) has a command economy?

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.17  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.16    3 weeks ago
So you believe the USA (via the Fed) has a command economy?

A command economy can use either direct or indirect controls.  The United States currently has a command economy that benefits the supply side of the marketplace.

That command of the economy is being accomplished through government monetary and fiscal policy.  That's primarily Congress.  The Federal Reserve's manipulation of money supply and interest rates is done through delegated Congressional authority.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.18  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.17    3 weeks ago
The United States currently has a command economy that benefits the supply side of the marketplace.

I see.  jrSmiley_87_smiley_image.gif  

We have very different understandings of the term 'command economy'.

 
 
 
MrFrost
5.2.19  MrFrost  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.11    3 weeks ago
Trickle down economics could possibly be made to work.

It's been tried over and over and over and over again and it never works. The theory that the rich 1%er's will have so much wealth that they will kick some down to the people in the middle/lower class is complete and utter bullshit. Why do you think donny cut taxes for the wealthy? Same idea. 

Want to know what trickle down economics has done? 

According to PolitiFact and others, in 2011 the 400 wealthiest Americans have more wealth than half of all Americans combined. 

That disparity has only grown since 2011. 

 
 
 
Raven Wing
5.2.20  Raven Wing  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.18    3 weeks ago
We have very different understandings of the term 'command economy'.

Yep. Yours makes sense. 

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.21  Tessylo  replied to  MrFrost @5.2.19    3 weeks ago

Trickle down never worked and never will

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.22  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.21    3 weeks ago
Trickle down never worked and never will

Barack Obama proved otherwise.

 
 
 
MUVA
5.2.23  MUVA  replied to  MrFrost @5.2.19    3 weeks ago

Let me guess you want your fair share and earning it is for suckers.

 
 
 
MUVA
5.2.24  MUVA  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.21    3 weeks ago

It works for me hey is any getting down to you yet.

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.25  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.22    3 weeks ago

Which means what?

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.26  Tessylo  replied to  MUVA @5.2.23    3 weeks ago

You guessed wrong, as usual 

Plus I work for a living.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.27  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.22    3 weeks ago

Your usual nonsense

 
 
 
MUVA
5.2.29  MUVA  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.26    3 weeks ago

Why are you against trickle down policy.Are you for wealth redistribution?Do you want government run healthcare or single payer.   

 
 
 
MrFrost
5.2.30  MrFrost  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.22    3 weeks ago
Barack Obama proved otherwise.

Obama proposed tax cuts for the middle class three times that I can recall, every time, our GOP congress voted it down because the cuts weren't deep enough for the 1%er's. Look it up. 

 
 
 
MrFrost
5.2.31  MrFrost  replied to  MUVA @5.2.23    3 weeks ago
Let me guess you want your fair share and earning it is for suckers.

I promise you I have more in the bank than you do. I retired at 41. I already have mine, I just happen to think that the rich should help those in need because it's those that are in need that put most of the money in the rich guys pocket in the first fucking place. 

 
 
 
MrFrost
5.2.32  MrFrost  replied to  MUVA @5.2.29    3 weeks ago
Why are you against trickle down policy.

Because it doesn't fucking work! 

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.33  Tessylo  replied to  MUVA @5.2.29    3 weeks ago

Because it doesn't fucking work.  You're the one who brought up wealth distribution.

Plus I didn't inherit a business.  I've had to work for my living

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.34  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.25    3 weeks ago
Which means what?

Barack Obama engineered a slow, steady economic recovery where most of the stimulus money went to banks and wealthy people.

His supporters rightfully point out the record of consistent job growth, fiscal stabilization, and economic growth.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.35  Jack_TX  replied to  MrFrost @5.2.30    3 weeks ago
Obama proposed tax cuts for the middle class three times that I can recall, every time, our GOP congress voted it down because the cuts weren't deep enough for the 1%er's. Look it up. 

Regardless of what he proposed, his actions ended up becoming a trickle down bailout of banks and shareholders.  Yet his economic record speaks for itself very positively.  His supporters continue to claim that the current robust economy is simply overflow from his administration.

Conversely, Reagan's actions ended up being very Keynesian, with massive government spending followed by increasing taxes to recoup the funds.

The interesting thing to the impartial observer is that both methods were effective.

 
 
 
MUVA
5.2.36  MUVA  replied to  MrFrost @5.2.31    2 weeks ago

Sure you are thinking of others please.

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.37  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.35    2 weeks ago

Reagan's trickle down didn't work and it still doesn't.  

 
 
 
MUVA
5.2.38  MUVA  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.37    2 weeks ago

What would work for you socialism? 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.39  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.37    2 weeks ago
Reagan's trickle down didn't work and it still doesn't.

The facts disagree.

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.40  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.39    2 weeks ago

Blah, blah, blah.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.41  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.40    2 weeks ago

I know, right?   Facts are sooooo inconvenient.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.42  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.18    2 weeks ago
We have very different understandings of the term 'command economy'.

My point is that there isn't anything wrong with a command economy.  The United States already has a command economy.  As with anything, that can be managed intelligently or it can be managed stupidly.  Often that is determined by the goals being pursued.

I am also making the point that pursuing supply side goals is a stupid way to manage an economy.  The economy of the United States isn't performing as a capitalist economy should perform.  Switching to a different supply side system, like Socialism, won't fix the economy.

Socialism has always failed because it is a supply side method of managing an economy.  I suggest that Socialism has become more politically appealing because the current governmental supply side economic management is failing, too.  Replacing the current unworkable system with a different unworkable system is not a solution.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.43  Nerm_L  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.39    2 weeks ago
The facts disagree.

Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton wrecked the US economy.  Trickle down has been very good for pirates in our economy; thieves always want to fire the Sheriff.

The United States cannot revitalize manufacturing because the country's industrial infrastructure has been destroyed by pirates.  Thank Reagan and Clinton for that.  The United States is rapidly losing the capacity to create wealth.

Reagan killed capitalism.

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.44  Tessylo  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.43    2 weeks ago

All republicans wreck the economy and then leave it to the Democrat to clean up their fucking mess.  

Bill Clinton had a surplus which Dubya then depleted.  

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.45  Tessylo  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.41    2 weeks ago

Which facts would those be?

You are still so demeaning and condescending.  I would prefer not conversing with you any longer.  

Deal is off.

Toodles.  

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
5.2.46  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.45    2 weeks ago
Which facts would those be?

" As a short-run strategy to reduce inflation and lower nominal interest rates, the U.S. borrowed both domestically and abroad to cover the Federal budget  deficits , raising the national debt from $997 billion to $2.85 trillion. ...  Reagan  described the new debt as the "greatest disappointment" of his presidency."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reaganomics


"In spite of the wildly speculative and false stories of arms for hostages and alleged ransom payments, we did not—repeat, did not—trade weapons or anything else for hostages, nor will we." - Ronald Reagan - November, 1986


"A few months ago, I told the American people I did not trade arms for hostages. My heart and my best intentions still tell me that's true, but the facts and evidence tell me it is not." - Ronald Reagan - March, 1987

“To watch that thing on television, as I did, to see those, those monkeys from those African countries – damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes!” - Ronald Reagan speaking to Nixon in 1971 regarding African delegates to the UN

 
 
 
Texan1211
5.2.47  Texan1211  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @5.2.46    2 weeks ago
"As a short-run strategy to reduce inflation and lower nominal interest rates, the U.S. borrowed both domestically and abroad to cover the Federal budget deficits, raising the national debt from $997 billion to $2.85 trillion. ... Reagan described the new debt as the "greatest disappointment" of his presidency."

Did Reagan spend a penny not approved by a Democratic House?

 
 
 
It Is ME
5.2.48  It Is ME  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.45    2 weeks ago
You are still so demeaning and condescending.

We're running out of mirrors ! jrSmiley_97_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.49  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.42    2 weeks ago
My point is that there isn't anything wrong with a command economy.  The United States already has a command economy.

Good grief Nerm.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.50  Nerm_L  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.44    2 weeks ago
All republicans wreck the economy and then leave it to the Democrat to clean up their fucking mess.  

And Democrats never get around to cleaning up the mess.  

Bill Clinton was a supply side dimwit that actually turned Reagan's nonsense into reality.  Clinton put the US economy in the hands of financial planners, vulture capitalists, and supply side economists.  Clinton made Alan Greenspan chairman of the Federal Reserve.

Bill Clinton had a surplus which Dubya then depleted. 

Clinton achieved a budget surplus by stealing from workers, offshoring jobs, opening the borders for imports, and shrinking the size of government; just like any supply side Republican.  Bill Clinton was more Reagan than Reagan.  Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton wrecked the US economy and killed the future.

And Democrats betrayed the country by trying to put another Clinton in the White House.  Democrats don't clean up messes; they are joined at the hip with Republicans to wreck the United States for the benefit of financiers, vulture capitalists, hedge fund managers, financial markets, global banks, multinational corporations, and any pirate that will give them a dime.

 
 
 
Tessylo
5.2.51  Tessylo  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.50    2 weeks ago

Your usual nonsense.  

Faulting democrats for that abomination in the White Trash House.

jrSmiley_44_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.52  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.49    2 weeks ago
Good grief Nerm.

What's the problem?  Am I taking too many carefully crafted talking points off the table?  Or am I getting too close to describing real problems that won't be solved by those talking points?

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.53  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.52    2 weeks ago

You think the US has a command economy.   The unique meaning that you tend to apply to select concepts makes meaningful discussion arduous.    

In other words, I do not have the patience to unravel language where the nouns are strangely redefined.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.54  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.53    2 weeks ago
You think the US has a command economy.   The unique meaning that you tend to apply to select concepts makes meaningful discussion arduous.     In other words, I do not have the patience to unravel language where the nouns are strangely redefined.

A command economy is defined as an economy in which production, investment, prices, and incomes are determined centrally by a government.  That is direct government control of the economy.

I am pointing out that the United States uses government policy to indirectly to achieve the same result.  The government utilizes central planning to directly control the monetary system, the credit system, stimulative fiscal policies, and the regulatory environment to indirectly influence production, investment, prices, and incomes.  The United States does utilize central planning to exert control over production, investment, prices, and incomes.

The United States also directly controls production, investment, prices, and incomes through a variety of subsidies, incentives, and social programs.  Income security and minimum wage requirements are centrally planned controls; a feature of a command economy.  Trade agreements, import duties, tariffs, and subsidies are centrally planned controls; a feature of a command economy.  The government created 401k and IRA markets are centrally planned controls on investment; a feature of a command economy.

The United States already has a command economy through indirect and direct controls.  That may not be as extensive or as unified as is found in Communist countries but, nevertheless, it is still a command economy.

Now, what are you complaining about?

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.55  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.54    2 weeks ago
I am pointing out that the United States uses government policy to indirectly to achieve the same result. 

You are claiming that indirect actions by the government are equivalent to direct control over the economy.   You are free to believe what you wish, but when your beliefs redefine well established words, your misuse of those words produces incoherence.  

The United States already has a command economy through indirect and direct controls.  That may not be as extensive or as unified as is found in Communist countries but, nevertheless, it is still a command economy.

You are standing alone making that claim.    You would have some support if you were arguing that the USA is a mixed economy, but declaring our market economy to be a command economy is just silly and I have no interest in this nonsense.

Now, what are you complaining about?

I am not complaining.   I am stating that I am not interested in a discussion when you redefine well-defined words and, worse, repeatedly insist that your redefinition is correct.  

 
 
 
JBB
5.2.56  JBB  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.55    2 weeks ago

"If you cannot dazzle them with brilliance then baffle them with bullshit".

If you were ever introduced to the utterly bassackwards nonscience I called Kelonomics back in the day then you would know that the only way to explain such nonsensical counterlogical claptrap was to redefine many commonly used words and terms completely differently than they are commonly understood to mean which is a dishonest approach ... 

Kudos for trying but you're participating in a "Classic" exercise in futility!

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
5.2.57  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.54    2 weeks ago
the United States uses government policy to indirectly to achieve the same result.  The government utilizes central planning to directly control the monetary system, the credit system, stimulative fiscal policies, and the regulatory environment to indirectly influence production, investment, prices, and incomes.

Comparing that to "socialism" is like claiming that the invisible property lines we have drawn up to determine property rights are really 30 ft tall barbed wire prison fencing. We need a government that "utilizes central planning" to maintain the value of the dollar, it's no longer based on gold or silver or some tangible asset. Therefore, if the government weren't carefully planning and making minor adjustments to the best interest of private businesses and individuals we'd see overnight 1000% inflation like they have in many unstable countries in the past. The Fed is not socialist no matter how you want to imagine it so.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.58  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.55    2 weeks ago
You are standing alone making that claim.    You would have some support if you were arguing that the USA is a mixed economy, but declaring our market economy to be a command economy is just silly and I have no interest in this nonsense.

A mixed economy is an economic system combining private and public enterprise.  That doesn't have anything to do with government control over an economy or a marketplace.

No, I'm not standing alone in making the claim that the United States is a command economy.  A command economy is about government control over the economy and marketplace.  The debate to shrink existing government controls or expand existing government controls really is premised upon the United States already being a command economy.

Democratic socialist proposals only have political appeal because the United States is already a command economy.  The proposals have been to expand the government's command over the economy.

I am not complaining.   I am stating that I am not interested in a discussion when you redefine well-defined words and, worse, repeatedly insist that your redefinition is correct. 

I am only applying the definitions to the real world.  Since you are not attempting to refute my application of the definitions, perhaps you can explain why the United States is not a command economy.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.59  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.58    2 weeks ago
A mixed economy is an economic system combining private and public enterprise. 

That term also refers to an economy that is market based but regulated (controlled) by government.   A mix of market and command.   

I am only applying the definitions to the real world.  

Prove that.  Show me an authoritative source which deems the USA a command economy.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.60  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @5.2.57    2 weeks ago
Comparing that to "socialism" is like claiming that the invisible property lines we have drawn up to determine property rights are really 30 ft tall barbed wire prison fencing. We need a government that "utilizes central planning" to maintain the value of the dollar, it's no longer based on gold or silver or some tangible asset. Therefore, if the government weren't carefully planning and making minor adjustments to the best interest of private businesses and individuals we'd see overnight 1000% inflation like they have in many unstable countries in the past. The Fed is not socialist no matter how you want to imagine it so.

Compare what to socialism? 

 
 
 
Raven Wing
5.2.61  Raven Wing  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.45    2 weeks ago
You are still so demeaning and condescending.  I would prefer not conversing with you any longer.  

Good for you! 

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.62  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.59    2 weeks ago
That term also refers to an economy that is market based but regulated (controlled) by government.   A mix of market and command. 

Are you suggesting that a command economy cannot utilize a marketplace?  If government controls extend into the marketplace, why isn't that command?

Prove that.  Show me an authoritative source which deems the USA a command economy.

Am I not allowed to think for myself?  If the whole idea is to just regurgitate 'authoritative' talking points then its no longer a debate, it's just a Trivial Pursuit game.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.63  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.62    2 weeks ago
Am I not allowed to think for myself?

Sure, but thinking for oneself does not mean redefining terms as one sees fit.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.64  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @5.2.57    2 weeks ago
The Fed is not socialist no matter how you want to imagine it so.

I never said the Federal Reserve was socialist.  What I said is the Federal Reserve is a feature of a command economy.

Socialism is defined as a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.  Socialism is about ownership; there isn't any requirement for a command economy.

But socialism is also limited to who owns everything on the supply side of the marketplace.  All economic theories limited to the supply side of the marketplace always fail.  Why?

The demand side of the marketplace provides the incentives for investment, innovation, and production.  Businesses and suppliers cannot provide their own incentives in a free marketplace.

Any economic theory that excludes the regulating influence and incentives of the demand side of the marketplace becomes more reliant on government controls to provide incentives.  Ownership of businesses and supply doesn't change that.  Excluding the demand side of the marketplace increases the need for a command economy.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.65  Nerm_L  replied to  TᵢG @5.2.63    2 weeks ago
Sure, but thinking for oneself does not mean redefining terms as one sees fit.

I did not redefine anything.  I provided the definition and applied the definition.  

You even provided a definition of mixed economy that indicates the US is a command economy.  Appealing to purity does not refute my contention.  And my contention cannot be so easily refuted because their are too many examples to show that the US is a command economy.  Almost everything in the marketplace is regulated; the few exceptions are not a refutation.  And choice in the marketplace is not a refutation because all those choices must comply with the same regulations.

 
 
 
TᵢG
5.2.66  author  TᵢG  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.65    2 weeks ago
You even provided a definition of mixed economy that indicates the US is a command economy.

Nerm, we cannot seem to communicate. 

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
5.2.67  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.64    2 weeks ago
The demand side of the marketplace provides the incentives for investment, innovation, and production.  Businesses and suppliers cannot provide their own incentives in a free marketplace. Any economic theory that excludes the regulating influence and incentives of the demand side of the marketplace becomes more reliant on government controls to provide incentives.  Ownership of businesses and supply doesn't change that.  Excluding the demand side of the marketplace increases the need for a command economy.

To claim we are a total command economy would be to ignore out prodigious ability, as Americans, to demand and consume. To act as if the free hand of the market isn't making most of the decisions on a demand basis would be foolish. Yes, we use some aspects of a command economy to create stability which does play a large part in many major industries, from farming to big oil. The fossil fuel industry received more in subsidies than we spent on our military last year, over $650 billion, so both parties are complicit in allowing the bowling lane bumpers to be raised preventing any gutter ball bankruptcies for big industries with powerful lobbies. But that still doesn't make us socialist, so I'm not really sure what pointing out the command parts of our economy has to do with the current debate.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.68  Jack_TX  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.43    2 weeks ago
Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton wrecked the US economy.

Oh good grief.

The United States cannot revitalize manufacturing because the country's industrial infrastructure has been destroyed by pirates.

The United States cannot revitalize manufacturing because it is cheaper to pay a Malaysian $2/hr than pay an American $40/hr, and for the last 30 years it's been cheaper to pay shipping from Asia than pay American labor.

Thank Reagan and Clinton for that.

No, thank Panamax freighters.

The United States is rapidly losing the capacity to create wealth.

Nonsense.  New millionaires are created in the United States every day.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.69  Nerm_L  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @5.2.67    2 weeks ago
To claim we are a total command economy would be to ignore out prodigious ability, as Americans, to demand and consume.

Why is 'total' a requirement? And what does consumer demand have to do with who owns businesses and supplies?

If General Motor's employees owned all the corporate stock instead of Wall Street stockholders, that would be socialist wouldn't it?  If the Federal government owned all the corporate stock on behalf of the public, that would be socialist wouldn't it?  Nothing else would need to change, GM could continue to operate as it does now.  General Motors becoming socialist wouldn't affect the marketplace at all.

On the other hand, the Federal government could impose standards and requirements on all manufactured vehicles; safety requirements, fuel efficiency requirements, pollution limits, size and weight restrictions, etc.  That would be governmental command control over what is available in the marketplace.  How many vehicle manufacturers there are and who owns those businesses doesn't matter.  The government command control directly affects the marketplace.

Socialism doesn't require a command economy.  And a command economy isn't necessarily socialist.  While the available examples from history combined socialism with a command economy, that isn't really a necessity.

To act as if the free hand of the market isn't making most of the decisions on a demand basis would be foolish.

Then taxes and regulations are really unimportant in affecting aggregate market based economic incentives.  Taxes and regulations may affect the microeconomics of individual businesses but won't affect the macroeconomic incentives provided by demand. 

The supply side economic expectations for smaller government isn't about the marketplace, those expectations are about providing more benefit to business owners and suppliers.  Socialism only changes the ownership of businesses but the expectation is still to provide more benefit to businesses.

But that still doesn't make us socialist, so I'm not really sure what pointing out the command parts of our economy has to do with the current debate.

As I explained, a command economy isn't necessarily socialist and doesn't have to be socialist.  A command economy doesn't indicate anything about who owns what or how economic output is distributed.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.70  Jack_TX  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.45    2 weeks ago
You are still so demeaning and condescending.

You're answering with "blah, blah, blah" and complaining about how other people treat you?  

Have a good day.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.71  Nerm_L  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.68    2 weeks ago
The United States cannot revitalize manufacturing because it is cheaper to pay a Malaysian $2/hr than pay an American $40/hr, and for the last 30 years it's been cheaper to pay shipping from Asia than pay American labor.

Then why are imports so expensive?  Apple does not manufacture iPhones in the United States so why do iPhones cost so much?  Why do General motors vehicles assembled in Mexico cost the same as those assembled in the United States?  Why isn't South American beef cheaper than American beef?

Automation doesn't require an hourly wage or benefits.  Automation works as well in the United States as anywhere else.  And automation costs the same no matter where it is installed.

Apple cannot build iPhones in the United States because it can't get screws.  The United States has lost its industrial infrastructure.  

Nonsense.  New millionaires are created in the United States every day.

The lottery creates new millionaires but the lottery does not create new wealth.  The increasing disparity in incomes (and wealth or savings) really does indicate that new millionaires are being creating by redistributing wealth from the bottom of the economy to the top.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.72  Jack_TX  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.71    2 weeks ago
Then why are imports so expensive?  Apple does not manufacture iPhones in the United States so why do iPhones cost so much?

Have you seen their P&L??  Also, huge amounts of the design work is done here in the US, just not the manufacturing.

  Why do General motors vehicles assembled in Mexico cost the same as those assembled in the United States?

They charge what they can get people to pay.

  Why isn't South American beef cheaper than American beef?

There isn't very much labor in beef.

Automation doesn't require an hourly wage or benefits.  Automation works as well in the United States as anywhere else.  And automation costs the same no matter where it is installed.

Sure, but automation is a relatively new phenomenon.  The Panamax freighter is not.

Apple cannot build iPhones in the United States because it can't get screws.  The United States has lost its industrial infrastructure.  

Apple isn't going to build iPhones in the US because they do work where it's done most cost-effectively.  That's how they became the world's biggest company.  When it costs less to build a fully automated assembly plant with 14 actual human workers somewhere in Wyoming than it costs to pay a Chinese slave labor camp to solder the damn things by hand, then iPhone production will come back to the US.  

 
 
 
Jack_TX
5.2.73  Jack_TX  replied to  Nerm_L @5.2.71    2 weeks ago
The increasing disparity in incomes (and wealth or savings) really does indicate that new millionaires are being creating by redistributing wealth from the bottom of the economy to the top.

What it really indicates is how terrible a job we're doing educating poor kids on how to participate in the modern American economy.

There is new wealth.  The economy has grown substantially.  Most of that growth has gone to the top because people at the top know how to participate in the economy to their benefit.  People at the bottom have no clue.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.74  Nerm_L  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.72    2 weeks ago
Have you seen their P&L??  Also, huge amounts of the design work is done here in the US, just not the manufacturing.

P&L doesn't set stock value.  And design work is an intangible and frangible asset, not a durable asset.  Factories are durable assets that indicate corporate capacity to create wealth.

They charge what they can get people to pay.

Kelonomics

Sure, but automation is a relatively new phenomenon.  The Panamax freighter is not.

Panamax freighters are middlemen.  Middlemen are not productive contributors to economic output; middlemen are cost with no gain.  Middlemen do not create wealth.  Middlemen are macroeconomic inefficiencies in the production chain.

Apple isn't going to build iPhones in the US because they do work where it's done most cost-effectively.  That's how they became the world's biggest company.  When it costs less to build a fully automated assembly plant with 14 actual human workers somewhere in Wyoming than it costs to pay a Chinese slave labor camp to solder the damn things by hand, then iPhone production will come back to the US.

That's the problem with the LCS economy.  Manufacturing offshore introduces inefficiencies into the production chain because so many more middlemen are required.  Cost effective inefficiencies may generate profits but are a drag on creating wealth.

The LCS economy relies upon inflation more than production.  Creating money is profitable but that created money does not represent wealth.

 
 
 
Nerm_L
5.2.75  Nerm_L  replied to  Jack_TX @5.2.73    2 weeks ago
What it really indicates is how terrible a job we're doing educating poor kids on how to participate in the modern American economy.

Apparently not since there are so many complaints about government programs.  Welfare works the same way, economically, as the stock market.

There is new wealth.  The economy has grown substantially.  Most of that growth has gone to the top because people at the top know how to participate in the economy to their benefit.  People at the bottom have no clue.

New money is not new wealth.  Inflation does not create wealth.  And the United States measures economic growth by ignoring substantial amounts of inflation.  The Federal Reserve manages the money supply which typically involves deflating the value of America's wealth.

If the United States pegged the dollar's value to a fixed standard then it's likely the economic growth of the United States would have been minuscule if not negative over the last few decades. 

 
 
 
Don Overton
5.2.76  Don Overton  replied to  Tessylo @5.2.27    2 weeks ago

Amen!!!!!!!!!!!!

 
 
 
MrFrost
6  MrFrost    3 weeks ago

So, in essence, socialism is the government's involvement in private business. Trump does this all the time, but whines about socialism. I guess socialism is ok with trump as long as it benefits him personally. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  MrFrost @6    3 weeks ago

That qualifies as statism and, indeed, many conflate statism with socialism.   So, I suppose, you have a point.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2  Sparty On  replied to  MrFrost @6    2 weeks ago

In true socialism as defined, there is NO private ownership of business.

With that in mind, and before one passes judgement on government owned business, one needs to look at some of the "businesses" the government does own and run.   Two come to my mind immediately.

The US Postal Service and the VA.

That's enough empirical evidence for me to be against government business ownership whenever possible.   No need to go any further.   I think of my Senators and Congresspeople as being "in charge" of ALL business for us in DC and i begin to laugh hysterically.  

Not one holy chance in hell they could make things better.   Not one.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.1  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2    2 weeks ago
In true socialism as defined, there is NO private ownership of business.

Socialism, at its core, means (at a minimum, there is more to say) that the workers own and operate all the businesses.  The private sector is most definitely in place.  The notion of state owned business is a consequence of the former USSR;  it is the direct opposite of what Marx was calling for.   

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.2  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.1    2 weeks ago
The private sector is most definitely in place.

How do you figure?

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.3  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.2    2 weeks ago

In our system, we distinguish the public sector from the private sector based on control.   Public sector entities are controlled by the government (the 'state'); private sector entities are controlled by citizens.

Following those distinctions, the private sector under socialism would consist of the businesses run by the workers; this would be the super majority of all businesses in the nation.

 
 
 
It Is ME
6.2.4  It Is ME  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.3    2 weeks ago
private sector entities are controlled by citizens.

Only "Controlled" by those "Certain Hated citizens" that were willing to take a gamble, and also hire the "Other" citizens.

"Following those distinctions, the private sector under socialism would consist of the businesses run by the workers;"

The "Other" citizens hired by "Certain" citizens, still have to follow the "Certain" citizens rules ! Would seem to make your distinction idea fall apart, unless the "Public" rulers got involved.

Soooo, based on that, what really is the difference between "Public" and "Private" these days. 

 
 
 
Kathleen
6.2.5  Kathleen  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.1    2 weeks ago

Could that change though?

 
 
 
Kathleen
6.2.6  Kathleen  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.3    2 weeks ago

Forgive me, I need to understand this more.

So if I owned my own business, that means the people I hire own it too?

Do I own it fully without the government and state having any part of it?

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.7  author  TᵢG  replied to  Kathleen @6.2.5    2 weeks ago
Could that change though?

Not sure what you mean.   

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.8  author  TᵢG  replied to  Kathleen @6.2.6    2 weeks ago
So if I owned my own business, that means the people I hire own it too?

Best way to understand this is to NOT start from the presumption that you are in a capitalist economy that has abruptly moved to a socialist economy.   The two are profoundly different and would be the result of a long evolution; not abrupt.

So the premise that you own a business as an individual in a socialist economy does not make much sense.   While it works, most business will involve more than a single worker (and thus more than a single owner).

Imagine instead that you (and others) have an idea for a business.   You would start the business by leasing means of production (land, buildings, equipment, capital, etc.).   The money your business makes will go to expenses, taxes and to the owners.   Everyone who works in the business is an owner (and thus have a vote).   Compensation, however, is unequal.

Internally, the workers would vote on major strategic initiatives (e.g. to start a new product line) and to form the management structure.   The democracy would not apply to every decision in the company; lesser decisions are handled democratically in a representative structure.   For example, electing a management team who will make decisions on behalf of the owners (and subject to owner's removing them from management).

New workers who join the enterprise are owners with a vote.    Ultimately everyone working for the business has a vote and owns part of the business and nobody outside of the business has a vote or owns part of the business.

Do I own it fully without the government and state having any part of it?

Yes.   The owners own the business.   The means of production, however, are owned by the public and are leased to the business.


Key here is to forget about how our current system works.   A socialist economy is profoundly different (a different paradigm).   Imagine how things might operate in 2100 or 2200 after significant societal evolution, not as they are in 2019.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.9  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.3    2 weeks ago
Following those distinctions, the private sector under socialism would consist of the businesses run by the workers; this would be the super majority of all businesses in the nation.

We have a fundamental difference of opinion about what "private" is.   If i own my company, i view that as private ownership.   If ALL the employees own the company, i don't really view that as private ownership.   It's owned "collectively" which to me is not "private" by any definition i'm familiar with in private commerce.

I hear what you're saying.   I just don't agree with it.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.10  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.9    2 weeks ago
I hear what you're saying.   I just don't agree with it.

My point was that there would still be government (what we call the public sector) and business (what I was calling the private sector to keep with familiar terms).  If you wish to call that something else it does not matter.   The important thing is that businesses operate outside of government: they compete, hire, make products, etc.   The dynamics would be very different from what we have today, same with the relationship with government, but there would still be two sectors.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.11  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.10    2 weeks ago

That is your definition of Socialism, not the one i'm familiar with.   Mine is the same as the one in the article which clearly states:

Definition of socialism

1 : any of various economic and political theories advocating collective or governmental ownership and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods

Clearly stated, socialism includes government ownership.

Regardless, I view "private" as closely held by a few people.   Not the majority or all the people in a company.  

It's simply not the same thing IMO.   One is truly private, one is not.   YMMV ... as it clearly does but i simply don't agree.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.12  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.11    2 weeks ago

The standard dictionary definition for socialism provides the most common usages (meanings) of the word.   In this case, one typically finds socialism with two usages:  collective ownership and government/state ownership.  You have ignored the collective ownership usage:  "... collective or governmental ownership".   The governmental ownership usage no doubt is there to cover the various systems self-labeled as 'socialism' with the former USSR as the exemplar.   The collective ownership usage refers to the original (core) meaning of the term.

Regardless, I view "private" as closely held by a few people.   Not the majority or all the people in a company.  

I explained to you what I meant and noted that I am fine with whatever you wish to call it.   My point is that there would still be businesses operating outside of government in the collective usage of the term.  Indeed, the whole point of socialism (originally and in modern theories) is that the workers are owner/operators;  not that they would in effect work for the state.   

 
 
 
Kathleen
6.2.13  Kathleen  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.7    2 weeks ago

I meant if the terms would change over time and there was a lot of control then your definition of it.

 
 
 
Kathleen
6.2.14  Kathleen  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.8    2 weeks ago

Thank you for explaining it to me T,G, I am not so sure if I would be totally for that.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.15  author  TᵢG  replied to  Kathleen @6.2.14    2 weeks ago
Thank you for explaining it to me T,G, I am not so sure if I would be totally for that.

Understandably.   We are living in a time where we are culturally predisposed to capitalism and, to add to that, all of our environment (everything from employee relations to retirement) is based upon our existing system.   A genuine socialist economy would be profoundly different and would be a change that most everyone could not assimilate.

Ergo my position that socialism, if it were to come to pass some day, will be the result of evolution and it will be what the society culturally and structurally desires.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.16  Sparty On  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.12    2 weeks ago
You have ignored the collective ownership usage:

Not really, i just pointed out that it wasn't the only definition.   You on the other hand have concentrated heavily on the collective definition which i as well have no problem with.   That said I can only speak for my company.      I think of all our employees or the government running our company and it makes me laugh.

Either would likely be a total disaster.

 
 
 
MUVA
6.2.17  MUVA  replied to  TᵢG @6.2.8    2 weeks ago

My family has spent over 80 years building our business and we would have to take partners in? The same people that don't show up on time  HALF THE TIME and are lucky if they get 40 hours a week in because of some lame excuses. 

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.18  Sparty On  replied to  MUVA @6.2.17    2 weeks ago

Over 40 years here and i know exactly what you are talking about.   Which is why i laugh at the prospects of our employees taking it over.

"Clusterfuck" might not be an extreme enough adjective to describe what would happen.

jrSmiley_9_smiley_image.gif

 
 
 
Jack_TX
6.2.19  Jack_TX  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.18    2 weeks ago
Which is why i laugh at the prospects of our employees taking it over.

Well....yeah.

The downfall of that theory is the (quite well-meaning and honorable) presumption that people are equal enough to collectively own and manage an enterprise.  Currently, that's just not the case.

I do think TiG is reasonably straightforward in acknowledging this, and does state repeatedly that any sort of collective ownership system would need to be something we evolved into.  Presumably, this evolution would include a dramatic increase in quality and capability of the average American. 

Sadly, our educational system is in such a state that we appear to be accelerating in the opposite direction of that necessary evolution.

 
 
 
Sparty On
6.2.20  Sparty On  replied to  Jack_TX @6.2.19    2 weeks ago

Agreed, i just never see it happening.   There will always be the "doers" doing a disproportionate amount of work and the "takers" who are content to let the someone else do as much of the work possible.

If some of my people spent half the time they spend trying to scam the system, on doing their job properly, we'd all be cooking with gas but alas ...... this is not how it works.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.21  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.16    2 weeks ago
Not really, i just pointed out that it wasn't the only definition.  

I had already noted that.   

You on the other hand have concentrated heavily on the collective definition which i as well have no problem with.  

Yes, that is indeed what I focused on.

I think of all our employees or the government running our company and it makes me laugh.

And rightly so.  You are looking at a current situation in our capitalist environment and abruptly transforming into a socialist environment.  That makes as much sense as taking a team of carpenters who specialize in framing residential homes and having them run a robotics company.   

I have repeatedly emphasized that socialism would not emerge unless society evolves to the point where the people are engaged, informed and want to be hands-on democratically running the show.   That is not how societies work today.  It may never work that way.   So taking our current society and abruptly putting these players into a socialist paradigm is silly.   Not only are the people not culturally aligned, the entire infrastructure of our society is predicated on the capitalist mode.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.22  author  TᵢG  replied to  MUVA @6.2.17    2 weeks ago

See @6.2.21

You too are simply thinking of taking our current capitalistic world and abruptly flipping it into a socialist world.

That is of course not going to work.   Further, that is a scenario that would never happen (unless maybe the nation was conquered).

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.23  author  TᵢG  replied to  Sparty On @6.2.20    2 weeks ago
There will always be the "doers" doing a disproportionate amount of work and the "takers" who are content to let the someone else do as much of the work possible.

Maybe.   If so then society will never evolve to the point where socialism will work.   That is, if the majority of the people in society are followers, takers and seeking to do the minimum to get by, then they will remain serfs.

If what we see now in terms of societal evolution is the best we will ever get in terms of working together, taking responsibility, seeing the big picture,  then I do not see socialism in the future.

 
 
 
TᵢG
6.2.24  author  TᵢG  replied to  MUVA @6.2.17    2 weeks ago

On another note, this article is about how the senate now is further muddying the water and trying to effectively ban anything that can be labeled as 'socialism'.  Yet, almost anything can be labeled as such.

It is pretty clear to us in this thread that socialism (as an actual economic system) is not going to just appear in the USA because of legislation.   So the economic system of socialism is certainly not a threat.

The threat, however, are the things that people incorrectly call 'socialism'.

The point of this article is that fighting 'socialism' is like fighting 'bad legislation'.   It is meaningless.   One cannot fight bad legislation, one can only fight specific legislation such as handing out free tuition to everyone in the USA.   The point is that anyone who simply states:  'I am against socialism' is not saying anything because the meaning of the word 'socialism' is all over the map.

AOC wants to raise minimum wage.   That has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with the economic system of socialism yet many people consider that to be part of 'socialism'.   So fight specifically against the raising of minimum wage, not against 'socialism'.   Fight against aggressive punitive taxation of wealth, not against 'socialism'.   

Basically, I am suggesting that 'socialism' should be avoided in political discussion and instead break it down into what we are actually talking about and discuss at the line item level.   Then at least the debaters know what they are debating.

 
 
 
 
Karri
7  Karri    3 weeks ago

Hmm. how does the First Amendment impact this measure?

 
 
 
Sparty On
8  Sparty On    2 weeks ago
Montana might need to consider electing a senator who contributes more than wasting time on a vague resolution for a very confused meme.

Lol .... don't just pick on Montana.   In the scheme of things there are many people in congress as bad or worse than Daines.   On both sides.

That .... is the unfortunate reality of our current situation.