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Communist utopia

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    Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 02:49
What happened with the communist Utopia? We all know it didn't work, but why it didn't work?

Comments, please.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 03:22
It didn't work for economical reasons mainly. People need rewards and competitions to be successful and communism system did not offer such things. Enormous success of USSR in 50s-60s happened because of postwar enthusiasm of soviet people but it could not last for long. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 03:52
Sure, but Communism was an economical utopia, in the first place. And failed. The question is why it failed.
I suspect it was because communism went against human nature. Savage capitalism is more akin to the "survival of the fittest" natural law, I guess. So, I believe the mistake was in thinking humans would learn to "behave".


Edited by pinguin - 03 Jul 2011 at 03:52
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 04:15
This is exactly what I meant.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 04:30
Marxist theory recquired the Lamarkian hypothesis that characteristics acquired by parents could be passed on to theiri offspring. Under Stalin this was promulgated as official ideology in he form of Lysenkoism.
 
The point was that with the arrival of the equitable and fair dictatorship of the proletariat, economic co-operation and collaboration would be transmitted to later generations by the generations that learned it, and would replace the competitive nature of man under capitalism or feudalism.
 
Didn't work. Probably wouldn't have worked even if that dictatorship had been as fair ad equitable as it was cracked up to be.
 
On the other hand, capitalism also doesn't work, also falling foul of human nature. It most obviously didn't work in the 'thirties, when the Soviet system was working quite well, economically and comparatively.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 04:46
I think you go too far with comparing lysenkoism with lamarkism. Besides, there is nothing wrong with lamarkism: recent discovery of epigenetical changes support Lamark's ideas to some extent :) Lysenkovism wasn't an ideology.  Right person was in a right place, sort of speak.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 04:47
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Marxist theory recquired the Lamarkian hypothesis that characteristics acquired by parents could be passed on to theiri offspring. Under Stalin this was promulgated as official ideology in he form of Lysenkoism.
 
The point was that with the arrival of the equitable and fair dictatorship of the proletariat, economic co-operation and collaboration would be transmitted to later generations by the generations that learned it, and would replace the competitive nature of man under capitalism or feudalism.

Interesting. Is there some works that in an explicit manner proposed this relation with Lamarkism? I know in general terms the theories of historical materialism, but I haven't found that "missing link".
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 05:34
Originally posted by Anton Anton wrote:

I think you go too far with comparing lysenkoism with lamarkism. Besides, there is nothing wrong with lamarkism: recent discovery of epigenetical changes support Lamark's ideas to some extent :)
There's certainly a lot wrong with Lamarckism. I haven't see any of these reported new experiments that provided any mechanism for the transmission, or that weren't explicable through genetics. It's possible of course for an organism's DNA to nutate under the influence of some environmental effect, like irradiation, but there's no reaosn to suppose that the resultant genetic inheritance will have anything in cmmon with the phenotype of the original parent, which is what Lamarck claimed. 
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Lysenkovism wasn't an ideology.  Right person was in a right place, sort of speak.
Lysenkoism was certainly ideological. Lysenko himself many not (or may) have intended it so, but Stalin and then Khrushchev turned it into one.
 
It would, I thnk be fair to say that Lysenkoism was a subset of Lamarckism: if Lamarckism is false then so is Lysenkoisn, but if Lysenkoism is false it doesn't (automatically) mean Lamarckism is.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 05:57
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Marxist theory recquired the Lamarkian hypothesis that characteristics acquired by parents could be passed on to theiri offspring. Under Stalin this was promulgated as official ideology in he form of Lysenkoism.
 
The point was that with the arrival of the equitable and fair dictatorship of the proletariat, economic co-operation and collaboration would be transmitted to later generations by the generations that learned it, and would replace the competitive nature of man under capitalism or feudalism.

Interesting. Is there some works that in an explicit manner proposed this relation with Lamarkism? I know in general terms the theories of historical materialism, but I haven't found that "missing link".
This from Lenin (my emphasis):
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And only then will democracy begin to wither away, owing to the simple fact that, freed from capitalist slavery, from the untold horrors, savagery, absurdities, and infamies of capitalist exploitation, people will gradually become accustomed to observing the elementary rules of social intercourse that have been known for centuries and repeated for thousands of years in all copy-book maxims. They will become accustomed to observing them without force, without coercion, without subordination, without the special apparatus for coercion called the state.
The italicised phrase I cannot account for except under the hypothesis that the change in one generation's character (due to the environmental change of the revolution) will be preserved in future generations.
 
http://www.geodz.com/eng/d/lamarckianism/lamarckianism.htm is relevant, but there's a limit to the searching I can do reading trhough Marxist texts to find specvific mentione of Lamarck.
 
On the other hand the relevant wikipedia pages seem OK.
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Parnell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 05:58
Ah yes, communism. A pernicious 19th century cult that directly led to millions of deaths and the terrifying sight of a generation of western students sacrifice their independence of thought to this bewilderingly retarded ideology. 
http://xkcd.com/15/



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Communism also gave us some benefits. It helped to stop savage capitalism, encouraged the development of workers rights with the 8 hours workday included, it helped to develop trade unions and also encouraged the development of social security.

I wonder what would have been of Capitalism if it was left wild, as in the beginnings.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 06:55
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

...
This from Lenin (my emphasis):
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And only then will democracy begin to wither away, owing to the simple fact that, freed from capitalist slavery, from the untold horrors, savagery, absurdities, and infamies of capitalist exploitation, people will gradually become accustomed to observing the elementary rules of social intercourse that have been known for centuries and repeated for thousands of years in all copy-book maxims. They will become accustomed to observing them without force, without coercion, without subordination, without the special apparatus for coercion called the state.
The italicised phrase I cannot account for except under the hypothesis that the change in one generation's character (due to the environmental change of the revolution) will be preserved in future generations.
 
http://www.geodz.com/eng/d/lamarckianism/lamarckianism.htm is relevant, but there's a limit to the searching I can do reading trhough Marxist texts to find specvific mentione of Lamarck.


Interesting. I don't know, but besides Lamarckian, it sound very Pavlovian to me: inducing a full society to react by conditionated reflexes. Confused


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 07:57
I dare anyone here prove to me that communism as preached by Lenin, Mao or Stalin was the same as preached by the first communist himself, Marx.
 
Because of its utopic nature communism became the easy horse that every bloodthirsty dictator rode to power. The masses who were not even considered citizens back then saw in communism as their saviour. The capitalist class was always in league with the ruling elite whether it was the church or the nobility, the idea of reformimg the current system became impossible and the masses who only wanted equality in opportunity began to look to communism which guaranteed in theory equality in everything.
 
What happened next is to the history books. The communist party turned out to be nothing but a group of kleptocrats who sought one thing, absolute power. And they did get it and it was their kleptocratic (not communistic) policies that eventually destroyed the USSR and other communist countries.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Parnell Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 10:07
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

I dare anyone here prove to me that communism as preached by Lenin, Mao or Stalin was the same as preached by the first communist himself, Marx.
 
Because of its utopic nature communism became the easy horse that every bloodthirsty dictator rode to power. The masses who were not even considered citizens back then saw in communism as their saviour. The capitalist class was always in league with the ruling elite whether it was the church or the nobility, the idea of reformimg the current system became impossible and the masses who only wanted equality in opportunity began to look to communism which guaranteed in theory equality in everything.
 
What happened next is to the history books. The communist party turned out to be nothing but a group of kleptocrats who sought one thing, absolute power. And they did get it and it was their kleptocratic (not communistic) policies that eventually destroyed the USSR and other communist countries.
 
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Communism as an ideology inherent denies the tendancy of human beings to succumb to the intense seductions of raw political power. Of course the idea is that the socialist state is a mere phase on the road to a classless communist society, but the fact that the 'science' of the politics envisages inherently virtuous people to command total and absolute power (Which the socialist state model requires to survive) is an utter absurdity. It is not an ideology, it is a cult.
http://xkcd.com/15/



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Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Communism also gave us some benefits. It helped to stop savage capitalism, encouraged the development of workers rights with the 8 hours workday included, it helped to develop trade unions and also encouraged the development of social security.

I wonder what would have been of Capitalism if it was left wild, as in the beginnings.


No it didn't, not here in the US at least. Communism had nothing to do with that. I would say that progressives were the main cause for the implementations of these policies. Unless you think Franklin Roosevelt was and outright Communist? Or even Theodore Roosevelt for that matter!

Capitalism, is i think, self correcting and not at all self destructing as some may think.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 13:23
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:


No it didn't, not here in the US at least. Communism had nothing to do with that. I would say that progressives were the main cause for the implementations of these policies. Unless you think Franklin Roosevelt was and outright Communist? Or even Theodore Roosevelt for that matter!


Why not? I believe Franklin Roosevelt was an extraordinary president with social concience. If that could be labeled "comunism", "socialism" or "other" is another matter. Sometimes labels don't fit well to realities. For instance, remember that China is "communist" Confused


Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:


Capitalism, is i think, self correcting and not at all self destructing as some may think.


Capitalism is nothing else than the power of money. Human greed in action. And not even the crazies government would leave capitalists fully alone to do what they wishes: remember Enron, for instance. All that has been proved with the fall of communism is that self-interest, greed and ambition had an important role in the development of new business and the economy in general.

It is not an ideology, and can't be formulated as such, but simply the self-interest of the rich people. Don't confusse Capitalism with Freedom.



Edited by pinguin - 03 Jul 2011 at 13:25
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Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:



Capitalism is nothing else than the power of money. Human greed in action. And not even the crazies government would leave capitalists fully alone to do what they wishes: remember Enron, for instance. All that has been proved with the fall of communism is that self-interest, greed and ambition had an important role in the development of new business and the economy in general.

It is not an ideology, and can't be formulated as such, but simply the self-interest of the rich people. Don't confusse Capitalism with Freedom.



I wasn't aware that i had confused the two. I agree capitalism is not an ideology but an economic system, and i haven't argued otherwise.

You see it as greedy tool of the rich and i see it as an integral part of the engine that fuels an economy. Why such hostility? How can people better their lives if there is no economic growth brought by capitalism? Further, what about the stress on the middle class in the US, and how can the capitalist part of a society be sustained without it's essentials being sucked dry by tons of government services and programs?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 15:07
Why the hostility? Because capitalists use human resources, define the rules of the game and pay what they wish to the servs they have, I guess. In other words, this world can be divided in two groups: those that manage people and those that are controlled by the first. That creates hostility.



Edited by pinguin - 03 Jul 2011 at 15:08
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote eventhorizon Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 16:04
It is one thing when a wealthy person pushes for the Republican agenda, I can understand that, it is pure self interest, but when I see every tom and harry going out to Tea Parties, you know that Faux news and propaganda is successful. Yes it may bring the US down, but no matter, there will be talking points to blame the other side. It is a sad thing to see a beautiful ship like the US/Titanic sinking, but with this kind of idiocy running amok, it can and will happen. But then such is Karma, what goes up must come down, it was a fluke that the US got to play the ruler of the free world in the first place I suppose, it was a window of opportunity, between the fall of Euro mercantile empires and fall of the Soviet Russian hegemony, which was nothing but a carry over from the Romanov's extended with a new ideology. Now time is up. Time for others to step in. The song and dance will continue for a few decades, but these red-staters will bring this ship down, I see no other ways around it.

Inefficiency is bad, but greed and theft is worse, way way worse. It is always the creativity of the masses (sometimes they need govt. services and handouts to survive and stay creative) that uplifts a nation and when the elites forget the masses and get too greedy, then the whole edifice falls apart, it is as simple as that.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 21:12

Perhaps I am the only one that ask what this idea of an "utopia" is about? whas there ever anything but rather vague ideas about the desired world of the future?



Edited by fantasus - 03 Jul 2011 at 22:05
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 21:23
Originally posted by Parnell Parnell wrote:



 It is not an ideology, it is a cult.


How is it not an ideology, exactly?  Bearing in mind that all cults by their very nature have an ideology.


Edited by Zagros - 03 Jul 2011 at 21:25
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 21:44
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Interesting. I don't know, but besides Lamarckian, it sound very Pavlovian to me: inducing a full society to react by conditionated reflexes. Confused
Pavlov's position is somewhat obscure. In the days wen Lysenkoism was official state ideology, he seems to have supporte, or at least gone along with, Lamarck. However I gather that more recently Russian scholars claim that he actually denied th iheritance of acquired characteristics. Difficult to judge, because of the political pressure he was living under. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jul 2011 at 21:57
Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:


Capitalism, is i think, self correcting and not at all self destructing as some may think.
Capitalism is not self-correcting. In many ways that's the worst thing about it. The theory that it was self-correcting depended on Say's Law being true, and Say's Law was exposed a long time ago, the events of '29-'39 being just the last nail in the coffin.
 
wikipedia falls over backward to assert that Say didn't believe in Say's Law, which may be true, nomenclature not often reflecting authorship, and it also does its best to rescue classical economics from it, but the historical reality and the effect on government policies is unchallengeable.
 
Capitalism fails because it has no negative feedback built into it, and it therefore periodically crashes and has to be rescued by non-capitalist mechanisms. The welfare sate is an attempt to build in some negative feedback, but strictly the welfare state is not capitalist.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 02:08
Even more, since the last 40 years capitalism has been bussy playing against peoples all over the world. The goal of capitalism? To spread cheap labour, in order to increase (what else?) profitts.

Samples:
(1) Invention of the outsourcing. You rent specialists like you rent cars. The problem is, all the social protection and trade union forces get broken in the process.

(2) Moving companies following cheap labour overseas. Even help desk are now in India.

(3) Developing techniques for downsizing, destroying the productive basis of countries, in order to obtain immediate profits.

(4) Encouraging immigration of cheap labour, forcing salaries to keep down.

(5) Increasing the labour pool. Even the women liberation has benefited mainly to capitalists, that now have twice the labour pool for the same money.

(6) Making huge benefits saling guns, pornography and drugs, while keeping with traditional business like tobacco, alcohol, gamble and prostitutes.

(7) Increasing the cost of goods and services. From notebooks to medicine, "innovation", that many times is just market labeling, prevent goods and services for a decline in prizes, so people must continue financing the huge margins of those industries.

(10) Forcing labour to get educated, and to get university degrees, but keeping the salaries frozen. That way, all the extra effort is payed by the worker with zero investment on the part of the company.

(11) Increasing authomatizing and computing, so the human resources are each time less in number.

(12) Replacing the office for the McDonals.

(13) What else?

It is undeniable that capitalism is at work. The problem is that today is less patriotic and human than ever. Where are the Henry Fords that dreammed of making cheap cars for the working class? Or the Howard Huges that build an airplane industries for his country?

The problem is, people get tired of capitalism and sooner of later we will have another French or Russian revolution. This time at global scale, I am afraid.






Edited by pinguin - 04 Jul 2011 at 02:15
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 02:16
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

(5) Increasing the labour pool. Even the women liberation has benefited mainly to capitalists, that now have twice the labour pool for the same money.
Same was true of corporate support for civil rights legislation in the 60s.
Quote
(7) Forcing labour to get educated, but keeping the salaries frozen. That way, all the extra effort is payed by the worker with zero investment on the part of the company.
Not necessarily 'forcing' labour to get educated. Facilitating the process is enough, since generally speaking people are happy to get educated.
 
Again like the '50s and '60s. Odd how fruitful trees can come from unhealthy fruit.
 
Quote
It is undeniable that capitalism is at work. The problem is that today is less patriotic and human than ever. Where are the Henry Fords that dreammed of making cheap cars for the working class? Or the Howard Huges that build an airplane industries for his country?
I wouldn't quote Hughes in there. Probably the world record holder from losing money almost as fast as his father's company could make it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 02:31
Yes, people is now more educated worldwide, but salaries hasn't grown proportionally. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zagros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 09:04
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Yes, people is now more educated worldwide, but salaries hasn't grown proportionally. 


True, also people's living standards even in the West have not improved on average much over the last 30 years despite a massive increase in GDP.  So it makes you wonder where does all the Capital go?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Anton Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 09:44
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:


Capitalism, is i think, self correcting and not at all self destructing as some may think.
Capitalism is not self-correcting. In many ways that's the worst thing about it. The theory that it was self-correcting depended on Say's Law being true, and Say's Law was exposed a long time ago, the events of '29-'39 being just the last nail in the coffin.
 
wikipedia falls over backward to assert that Say didn't believe in Say's Law, which may be true, nomenclature not often reflecting authorship, and it also does its best to rescue classical economics from it, but the historical reality and the effect on government policies is unchallengeable.
 
Capitalism fails because it has no negative feedback built into it, and it therefore periodically crashes and has to be rescued by non-capitalist mechanisms. The welfare sate is an attempt to build in some negative feedback, but strictly the welfare state is not capitalist.


So, is there a self-correcting economical model?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 11:04
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Capitalism is not self-correcting. In many ways that's the worst thing about it. The theory that it was self-correcting depended on Say's Law being true, and Say's Law was exposed a long time ago, the events of '29-'39 being just the last nail in the coffin.
 


So says the challenging Keynesian economic model. However, too say that it is not self correcting is incorrectly stated as a fact instead of it being only an challenged opinion.

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Capitalism fails because it has no negative feedback built into it, and it therefore periodically crashes and has to be rescued by non-capitalist mechanisms. The welfare sate is an attempt to build in some negative feedback, but strictly the welfare state is not capitalist.


I fail to see in someways, how or why such measures are taken when rewards are foisted on the failures or the non-productive while punishment goes to success, venture capital, entrepreneurs and innovators. While in other ways, what i see of those that are rewarded for their failure, i most certainly do not like.
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Al Jassas View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 Jul 2011 at 11:58
Originally posted by Anton Anton wrote:

Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

Originally posted by Panther Panther wrote:


Capitalism, is i think, self correcting and not at all self destructing as some may think.
Capitalism is not self-correcting. In many ways that's the worst thing about it. The theory that it was self-correcting depended on Say's Law being true, and Say's Law was exposed a long time ago, the events of '29-'39 being just the last nail in the coffin.
 
wikipedia falls over backward to assert that Say didn't believe in Say's Law, which may be true, nomenclature not often reflecting authorship, and it also does its best to rescue classical economics from it, but the historical reality and the effect on government policies is unchallengeable.
 
Capitalism fails because it has no negative feedback built into it, and it therefore periodically crashes and has to be rescued by non-capitalist mechanisms. The welfare sate is an attempt to build in some negative feedback, but strictly the welfare state is not capitalist.


So, is there a self-correcting economical model?
 
No, which is why government is there.
 
Al-Jassas
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