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No, not communism, nor socialism, but oligarchy...

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  • Blue Doggy
    started a topic No, not communism, nor socialism, but oligarchy...

    No, not communism, nor socialism, but oligarchy...

    Here is a good article, that hits the nail on the head.., and it would be impossible for an objective mind to refute it, IMO, but you are welcomed to make that attempt....

    You often hear inequality has widened because globalization and technological change have made most people less competitive, while making the best educated more competitive. There’s some truth to this. The tasks most people used to do can now be done more cheaply by lower-paid workers abroad or by computer-driven machines.
    But this common explanation overlooks a critically important phenomenon: the increasing concentration of political power in a corporate and financial elite that has been able to influence the rules by which the economy runs.



    As I argue in my new book, “Saving Capitalism: For the Many, Not the Few” (out this week), this transformation has amounted to a pre-distribution upward.
    Intellectual property rights—patents, trademarks, and copyrights—have been enlarged and extended, for example, creating windfalls for pharmaceutical companies.
    Americans now pay the highest pharmaceutical costs of any advanced nation.
    At the same time, antitrust laws have been relaxed for corporations with significant market power, such as big food companies, cable companies facing little or no broadband competition, big airlines, and the largest Wall Street banks.
    As a result, Americans pay more for broadband Internet, food, airline tickets, and banking services than the citizens of any other advanced nation.
    Bankruptcy laws have been loosened for large corporations—airlines, automobile manufacturers, even casino magnates like Donald Trump—allowing them to leave workers and communities stranded.
    But bankruptcy has not been extended to homeowners burdened by mortgage debt or to graduates laden with student debt. Their debts won’t be forgiven.
    The largest banks and auto manufacturers were bailed out in 2008, shifting the risks of economic failure onto the backs of average working people and taxpayers.
    Contract laws have been altered to require mandatory arbitration before private judges selected by big corporations. Securities laws have been relaxed to allow insider trading of confidential information.
    CEOs now use stock buybacks to boost share prices when they cash in their own stock options.


    Tax laws have special loopholes for the partners of hedge funds and private-equity funds, special favors for the oil and gas industry, lower marginal income-tax rates on the highest incomes, and reduced estate taxes on great wealth.
    Meanwhile, so-called “free trade” agreements, such as the pending Trans Pacific Partnership, give stronger protection to intellectual property and financial assets but less protection to the labor of average working Americans.
    Today, nearly one out of every three working Americans is in a part-time job. Many are consultants, freelancers, and independent contractors. Two-thirds are living paycheck to paycheck.
    And employment benefits have shriveled. The portion of workers with any pension connected to their job has fallen from just over half in 1979 to under 35 percent today.
    Labor unions have been eviscerated. Fifty years ago, when General Motors was the largest employer in America, the typical GM worker, backed by a strong union, earned $35 an hour in today’s dollars.
    Now America’s largest employer is Walmart, and the typical entry-level Walmart worker, without a union, earns about $9 an hour.
    More states have adopted so-called “right-to-work” laws, designed to bust unions. The National Labor Relations Board, understaffed and overburdened, has barely enforced collective bargaining.
    All of these changes have resulted in higher corporate profits, higher returns for shareholders, and higher pay for top corporate executives and Wall Street bankers – and lower pay and higher prices for most other Americans.
    They amount to a giant pre-distribution upward to the rich. But we’re not aware of them because they’re hidden inside the market.
    The underlying problem, then, is not just globalization and technological changes that have made most American workers less competitive. Nor is it that they lack enough education to be sufficiently productive.


    The more basic problem is that the market itself has become tilted ever more in the direction of moneyed interests that have exerted disproportionate influence over it, while average workers have steadily lost bargaining power—both economic and political—to receive as large a portion of the economy’s gains as they commanded in the first three decades after World War II.
    Reversing the scourge of widening inequality requires reversing the upward pre-distributions within the rules of the market, and giving average people the bargaining power they need to get a larger share of the gains from growth.
    The answer to this problem is not found in economics. It is found in politics. Ultimately, the trend toward widening inequality in America, as elsewhere, can be reversed only if the vast majority join together to demand fundamental change.
    The most important political competition over the next decades will not be between the right and left, or between Republicans and Democrats. It will be between a majority of Americans who have been losing ground, and an economic elite that refuses to recognize or respond to its growing distress
    That this backs up what I have been saying for years is no surprise, for what I have been maintaining is so obvious, that a rational mind cannot honestly object.

    So, the question is, who are the people responsible, which politicians, notably, were involved in this neoliberal economic treason?

    Ok, I will start it out, Reagan, Bush, Clinton, Bush, Obama. But who else in congress are the men guilty of economic treason upon the average American? Or is it basically ALL of them except Bernie Sanders?

    And we used to have members here, who agreed with what has been done to our economic model. They basically said, that americans did not deserve a living wage, making what we consume in the smaller consumer goods, and that the 80 cents an hour paid to the communists was what it was worth. That they could make this judgement, after we paid living wages since the great depression for these jobs, surely is just an indicator of a particular right wing ideological belief, that determines what working people are worth. That they do not think that working people are worth much, is a given, and a peculiar thing within this way of thinking. Yet the same people holler that work should have value, within this society. And that we should value work. Just another incoherence that is so blatant with these thinkers.

    http://www.alternet.org/economy/robe...gainst-rest-us
    Last edited by Blue Doggy; 09-30-2015, 12:07 PM.

  • Voland
    replied
    Originally posted by radcentr View Post
    Germany has done one better by showing what prosperity results, with proper balance between socialist and capitalist economic factors. Link:

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2...cts-inequality

    The reason the wealthy don't do as well in countries they completely dominate, is because of that domination. Communist countries fail in large part because the lower income groups consistently dominate policy decisions. Fascists fail because the wealthy are -by default- in the driver's seat. People complete the failure because they place their faith in a political class, which pretends to answer to the dominant class. We have seen what happens in "push comes to shove" situations: Dictators make people "disappear" within the dominant class, while the 'enemy' class is frequently disposed of in public. Proof (sarcasm) that the fearless leader is keeping the dominant ones "safe". The Republic, OTOH, triangulates power to ensure that no one can dominate the other without resistance. The working poor dominate and squeeze too much from the wealthy, innovators (wealthy job creators) leave or do not produce. Economy stagnates, socialist-leaning politicians take the blame and are voted out (Spain, former Soviet Union, etc.) OTOH, wealth-dominated leaders are unable to produce employment due to economic imbalance, which crashes against growing population, resulting in revolution (French, Bolshevik/Russian). Extremes in political and economic solutions are unnecessary, but only when people pay attention and use solutions from mixed market economies that have done well over time.
    Well, that's ordoliberal economics, also known as "social market economy" to Germans. Ordoliberalism ( nothing to do with american liberalism) puts economic sustainability and stability first and last and far ahead of growth. German pride is to a lesser extent linked to some subjective "greatness" over others and more to having learned the lessons from the 20th century and having managed an economic and political turnaround that few people would have predicted or considered possible two generations ago. Thus beeing beeing the "biggest" or "greatest" kid on the block is far less important than beeing the one with the most resilient economy, and Germanys performance after the financial crisis arguably demonstrates getting a couple of things right. Ordoliberals were an economic school originating in the 20s/30s, swept to power in post-WW II Western Germany, and faced with the enormous task of rebuilding a devastated country and economy they partially developed traditions going back as far as the medieval crafts guilds, like cooperative management structure, or to Bismarcks second empire, like universal healthcare, further. For ordoliberals social protection is not imposed by the state and seen as a liability , but on the contrary part of a social contract. Workers sitting on companies supervisory boards ( the law in Germany), in that philosophy creates a " community of responsibility". German unions are used to work cooperatively and long-term oriented with management, since in the end both sides share the goal of ensuring economic success. Yet having and taking responsibility is something fundamentally different than merely insisting on rights and interests. It forces each side to act constructively, but it also establishes long-term loyalty to the company among workers.
    Ordoliberals reject the view that a free market is the same as a deregulated market and argue on the contrary that a market to be free and to stay free ( also from corrupt corporations and cartels, irresponsible unions and power-hungry politicians) requires constant active steps and a prudent framework of rules out of reach for each of the parties concerned. They furthermore argue that economics cannot reasonably be separated from their societal dimension. Which means the role of the ordoliberal state and its independent agencies like central bank or anti-trust office is to make sure that the rules are abided that keep the common economic boat from capsizing. Rather than to intervene "Boom and bust"-style. Germanys preferred response to crises like 2008 is called " Kurzarbeit". It means that , roughly put, companies can put employees on shorter hours during downturns in demand, without sacking them, while the governement makes up the difference in pay. Once demand starts to kick in again, the governement gets out of the calculation and companies can directly bounce back. Without expensive layoff and re-hiring rounds. Like that the state finances existing jobs and preserves consumption instead of dole money or having to "create" ( rarely sustainable) jobs. To give one example.
    That is not to say that german governements have always followed ordoliberal principles. Yet its economic system and its economic policy ( visible f.e. during the Eurocrisis) have a huge ordoliberal footprint all over that is going to stay ( and that can also be found in other northern european countries as well as EU policies).
    Last edited by Voland; 10-20-2015, 05:02 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • radcentr
    replied
    Once the majority actually vote, and the majority of those realize the difference between Big Capitalism and free enterprise, it will settle back into a reality that can be managed. Until then, we have to deal with a large portion of people who believe they can achieve the grand luxury enjoyed by those at the top of the heap. We also have to deal with those same people believing the top of the heap will dedicate their resources to paying good wages to well educated people who grow up in a well financed, organized civil society, ruled by law.

    Capitalists are supposed to dedicate their resources (time & money) to making more money and expanding their business. Capitalists are not supposed to care for the poor, and are only interested in a civil society that supports capitalism. Not to criticize capitalism, just to point out to irrational people that capitalism is only one factor of any given economy, rather than the only factor. In short, we must convince the Dreamers that capitalists did not actually build all of it by themselves. Not too difficult, but it will require persistence, using the many examples provided by the non-capitalist portions of the economy. Then it is necessary to calm them down, assuring them that non-Dreamers want capitalists to participate, just not in the form of cartels or other forms that are "Too Big to Fail".

    Leave a comment:


  • Blue Doggy
    replied
    Originally posted by PeterUK75 View Post


    No it wouldn't and the US would be just as hard hit as you get so much made by them.
    You may not believe this but China does sell to other countries in the world other than the US so while stopping trade with the US would be tough for them it wouldn't destroy them.
    Yep, our oligarchs and political parties colluded, and just stopped Americans to make what they consume, for one reason. To max out elite profits. It's GOP neoliberalism, that does not consider anyone but the greed driven elites. They do not represent the working American, and yet a large block of white working americans vote for them. Can you explain that insanity to me? Why would anyone vote for the guy with the sharp knife across his jugular? Why? What kinda of lies could a GOPher politician tell these people, in order to get them to commit economic suicide? And, is there any way in hell to cure these people? Is it some kind of mental affliction, that cuts off perception of reality? Is it just the power of a belief? We know man has killed one another for thousand of years, over religious beliefs. Beliefs! And why can people not be aware that their beliefs are determining their perception of reality? And perhaps, at least try to rise above that deep conditioning and look afresh at the world? Obviously the way they believe isn't solving anything, and creates new problems. And all because of a belief, manufactured by thought, based upon a corrupt view of reality.

    We might cure these people, by putting them through an Ayahuasca ritual, one of those week long ones, that pushes the brains reset switch, and brings back intelligence. They say, a conservative neoliberal is dramatically changed, and they cannot tolerate their prior belief system. They lose much of a selfishness that they use a misnomer and refer to as "individualism" They come into contact with the truth, that they are simply a part of a greater whole, and see themselves differently, more apt to believe in providing for the best interests of the group, not just a few individuals. They are more apt to believe in cooperation, and people working towards a common goal, the greatest good.. And of course they have to walk away from their conservative neoliberalism.

    Leave a comment:


  • PeterUK75
    replied
    Originally posted by OldmanDan View Post


    If China cut off their supply lines to the U.S., it would go broke in weeks. It would be nothing but good for this country.

    No it wouldn't and the US would be just as hard hit as you get so much made by them.
    You may not believe this but China does sell to other countries in the world other than the US so while stopping trade with the US would be tough for them it wouldn't destroy them.

    Leave a comment:


  • radcentr
    replied
    Because China couldn't sell to someone else? No one can beat slave labor (near zero wages compared to other nations) for assembled products, and China has the largest population. If they can't sell internally, they have a very large number of nations willing to buy their cheap finished products.

    The commies have out-capitalized the capitalists, by getting to a near-zero wage faster than anyone else in the nearly-developed world. It also helps when they can construct and de-construct monopolies or cartels at will, and minimize regulations.

    Leave a comment:


  • OldmanDan
    replied
    Originally posted by Blue Doggy View Post

    That America no longer exists, thanks to globalization. We, in a long term large scale conventional world war, do not have the industrial capacity to win it. If China cut off her supply line, they could clothe their own soldiers, ours would be running around naked, at some point. We would have to surrender when winter time arrived.

    If China cut off their supply lines to the U.S., it would go broke in weeks. It would be nothing but good for this country.

    Leave a comment:


  • Blue Doggy
    replied
    Originally posted by Brexx View Post


    The US became a world power by way of several steps, but the final one would be WWII which was won by US superior industrial capacity.
    Capitalism made the US the supreme world power.
    That America no longer exists, thanks to globalization. We, in a long term large scale conventional world war, do not have the industrial capacity to win it. If China cut off her supply line, they could clothe their own soldiers, ours would be running around naked, at some point. We would have to surrender when winter time arrived.

    Leave a comment:


  • Brexx
    replied
    Originally posted by radcentr View Post
    Size matters? That has it's limitations. Bigger arrives at a point where it becomes a disadvantage (dinosaurs being the more common example). The US prospered mostly because it was a Republic, first. Not because we became the most efficient ass-kickers of the modern era.

    Think about it for a minute. We came to be a world power after our civil war, not before. That arms experiment paid off in addition to the practice of advanced warfare, by the time we took over the larger piece of the decaying Spanish empire in 1898-9. But we changed the world way before that; the French Revolution, which started a chain reaction ending in the Bolshevik Revolution. For good or bad, that is why the US is a world power.

    The US became a world power by way of several steps, but the final one would be WWII which was won by US superior industrial capacity.
    Capitalism made the US the supreme world power.

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  • Blue Doggy
    replied
    Originally posted by radcentr View Post
    Size matters? That has it's limitations. Bigger arrives at a point where it becomes a disadvantage (dinosaurs being the more common example). The US prospered mostly because it was a Republic, first. Not because we became the most efficient ass-kickers of the modern era.

    Think about it for a minute. We came to be a world power after our civil war, not before. That arms experiment paid off in addition to the practice of advanced warfare, by the time we took over the larger piece of the decaying Spanish empire in 1898-9. But we changed the world way before that; the French Revolution, which started a chain reaction ending in the Bolshevik Revolution. For good or bad, that is why the US is a world power.
    Aw heck, and I wuz thinkin' it was because God was on our side....

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  • radcentr
    replied
    Size matters? That has it's limitations. Bigger arrives at a point where it becomes a disadvantage (dinosaurs being the more common example). The US prospered mostly because it was a Republic, first. Not because we became the most efficient ass-kickers of the modern era.

    Think about it for a minute. We came to be a world power after our civil war, not before. That arms experiment paid off in addition to the practice of advanced warfare, by the time we took over the larger piece of the decaying Spanish empire in 1898-9. But we changed the world way before that; the French Revolution, which started a chain reaction ending in the Bolshevik Revolution. For good or bad, that is why the US is a world power.

    Leave a comment:


  • Blue Doggy
    replied
    Originally posted by PeterUK75 View Post
    You may be the richest now but the richest in the whole of history?

    I think the Roman Empire at its height would like a word as compared to everyone else at the time they were much further ahead than the US is to say, China now.

    They were so far ahead we even named the few hundred years after them the dark ages and I don't think the eventual toppling of the US as number 1 economy will have anywhere near the same impact.

    Sorry for the off topic ramble I just have a soft spot for the Roman Empire.

    Yeah, I think the richest in the history of the world. In so far as an empire. Some people say, that there isn't an American Empire, but Empires in the 21st century would be different than the old empires. I mean, we have 1400 military bases in 120 odd nations. We circle the globe. If we do not want a leader of another nation to be in power, we break international law, that other more intelligent americans helped to write, and we remove them. If not by outright invasion, then by covert CIA operations. We assassinate, we do all of those things the Dark Empire in Stars Wars did. And we even have a political party that not only supports it, but cheers it on. It is a helluva thing.

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  • PeterUK75
    replied
    You may be the richest now but the richest in the whole of history?

    I think the Roman Empire at its height would like a word as compared to everyone else at the time they were much further ahead than the US is to say, China now.

    They were so far ahead we even named the few hundred years after them the dark ages and I don't think the eventual toppling of the US as number 1 economy will have anywhere near the same impact.

    Sorry for the off topic ramble I just have a soft spot for the Roman Empire.

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  • Blue Doggy
    replied
    Originally posted by PeterUK75 View Post
    I think you're forgetting that "USA, USA, USA" and how US conservatives know better than mere facts about tiny Northern European nations and how they run their puny economies. It may work in Germany but it can never work in the mighty USA.
    I do recognize it would have to be tweaked, but we are the richest nation, in the history of humanity, but of course, with much of that being vested into the hands of around 158 families. But the basic principles are valid, and much more moral than our immorality. But we cannot say it's immoral, for we allow our capitalists the luxury of being outside of morality, we exempt them from it, while holding everyone else to it. So, you can sell drugs, and get 30 years in prison, but you can sell out the nation, on wall street, crash the world economies, and get a bonus. If you raise hell about this, you are given that old saw, "America, love it or leave it."

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  • PeterUK75
    replied
    I think you're forgetting that "USA, USA, USA" and how US conservatives know better than mere facts about tiny Northern European nations and how they run their puny economies. It may work in Germany but it can never work in the mighty USA.

    Leave a comment:

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