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Old 05-12-2001, 06:29 AM  
oleman47 oleman47 is offline
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Public ownership of means of production of goods or services to be shared by all, socialism, arose as answer to the abuses of the industrial revolution and cartel unresponsiveness to public need. This was most prevalent in areas we now call public utilities. As an example, electricity providers refused to extend service to farmers. Water companies refused to extend services to new areas or suburbs. Almost all became regulated as monopolistic pricing was rampant.

We are in an energy crisis which is of corporate failure to provide. The international cartel is limiting crude oil production while wanting subsidies to acquire more. The cartel refuses to build refineries in order to enhance profit margins to drill for more of what they are limiting.

Conoco oil is located in Ponca City, Oklahoma. Not a bastion of left wing eco-wackos. Ponca Citians would love to have a few more refineries. The CEO says that to build more refineries will lower gas prices and therefore restrict their exploration program. While admitting their is more than enough oil, it is just that his company does not own it. This was very honest. And if you were a shareholder, music to your ears. For the consumer, we will screw you if we can.

In the past, the oil companies would not carry enough crude inventory so a national inventory was established for emergencies, which was helpful last summer to hit OPEC over the head with as they continue their eternal exercise in greed. I think we need the same thing now in energy production. Enough energy producing capacity to assure that monopolistic pricing and willful scarcity is blunted. Bush said he is sending 100 billion to some of us to buy gas with. Why not build a few refineries?

Last edited by oleman47; 05-12-2001 at 06:32 AM..
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Old 05-12-2001, 07:32 AM   #2
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Looks good in a textbook, doesn't it?

Socialism is a wonderful concept. From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs. Truly a noble concept and a perfect society.

Unfortunately, it fails whenever brought in contact with laziness, corruption, stupidity, avarice and incompetence.

i.e: people.

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Old 05-12-2001, 07:49 AM   #3
oleman47 oleman47 is offline
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Hmmmm Gaz
A lot like non-socialism, right?
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Old 05-12-2001, 08:04 AM   #4
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Like ANY political system.

oleman47-

Exactly.

Capitalism on paper is a pure meritocracy. The harder you work, the more you get. You can truly haul yourself up by your own bootstraps. At least, that is how it works on paper.

Unfortunately, those same human frailties that doom Socialism also crush Capitalism in the real world.

"No plan survives contact with the enemy."

The enemy is human nature. The failings of people will corrupt any system of government.

Socialism is not viable in the real world, because you cannot motivate people to produce when they do not [u]have[/u] to. Under a socialist system, you can coast. You can take more out of the system than you put in. As more and more people realize this fundamental flaw in the system, more of them coast. That is simply basic human nature. And then you have fewer and fewer people doing more and more of the work for those who coast.

Sound familiar? Does the term "Social Security" ring a bell?

In the real world, with venal, flawed human beings, I prefer a meritocracy, where the government is responsible for restricting and punishing those who abuse the system. In that system, the basic human faults of greed and lust for power will allow the unscrupulous to establish a monopoly and manipulate the markets to their own advantage. The "haves" can use the "have nots" to death. However, the intrusion of the State can prevent these abuses. Checks and balances can be built into the system to hinder misuse. Those who bypass the checks and balances can be punished after the fact.

Neither system is perfect, but in the real world, a meritocracy is far more workable than socialism.

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:13 AM   #5
oleman47 oleman47 is offline
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My water is socialist. My airport is socialist. My golf course is socialist. My parks are socialist. My schools. Socialism is all about us. Many utililties are well regulated, ie at the whim of public direction. Arrowhead is socialist.
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Old 05-12-2001, 08:15 AM   #6
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Gaz
Did not see the connection of lazy people and SS. To get SS you have to work to get payroll taxes to get it.
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Old 05-12-2001, 08:17 AM   #7
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Ah, a fresh new definition of the term.

My water is provided by a privately-owned company.

The golf courses are privately owned.

I do not own my airport.

I do not own my school.

I do not own the utility company.

Arrowhead is owned by a private company.

Perhaps you have a special definition of "socialist?"

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:22 AM   #8
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My bad, I was not clear enough.

oleman47-

My point was that fewer workers are paying for more SS benefits. That is analogous to the situation when the workers in a socialist state discover that they get the same benefits whether they work their butts of or do the minimum required.

By the way, you are wrong on SS benefits. SS benefits are often paid to people who have never paid a dime into the system. That is why the system is facing bankruptcy unless it is "saved." And that is the major complaint many people have with the system. Instead of being a personal retirement account [as originally sold to the public], it has become a slush fund for distribution of government largess [with my money].

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:24 AM   #9
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Greed can be good. But the good is not based on greed. Or even merit. There is a question of who is meritorious. Is person who could not work because of polio less meritorious than a Chiefs QB. Are you born to meritorious race? Are you meritorious because you have a high IQ, or win the lottery. Or is it some neighbor that babysits for you in an emergency?
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Old 05-12-2001, 08:30 AM   #10
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My water is owned by the city, as are the airport, most golf courses, etc. SS money comes from payroll taxes, people who work, and there are non working disabled people and dependents of old people on it also. Some of the disabled worked before this condition as did many of the old people.
If your water is from a private source does not make my water the same as yours. I have not seen many jumbo jets land at private airports but glad you got a good one.
Basically, I disagree with your assumption that people are scum.
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Old 05-12-2001, 08:32 AM   #11
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I am still waiting for a perfect system to emerge.

oleman47-

I did not say that capitalism [a meritocracy] was perfect, I said it was preferable, given the limitations of the real world. Perfection is impossible when people are involved. You cannot make a silk purse from a sow's ear.

However, capitalism [a meritocracy] is a more viable system in the real world than socialism. You can restrict monopolistic practices. You cannot restrict laziness and you cannot legislate enthusiasm or patriotism.

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:39 AM   #12
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Look out! Hot button pressed!

[quote] and there are non working disabled people and dependents of old people on it also.[/quote]

That is how SS got in the fix it is in. The government purchased more votes by extending benefits to those who did not earn them. Soon, there will not be enough workers to support the extended benefits.

I do not expect to see a dime of the money I have paid into SS. By the time I am ready to collect [u][b]MY money[/u][/b], there will not be enough to go around. Step #1 will be means-testing.

"Surely those with incomes over $500,000 a year do not need Social Security. That money should go to the poor retired. It is only fair. Think of the children."

And we will all agree that someone taking in $500K a year doesn't need a SS check.

Then comes $250K.
Then $125K.
Inevitably, the "fair" target will catch up with my income.

I have paid into that fund for nearly 30 years and I will get nothing from it.

Oh yeah, that is "fair."

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:43 AM   #13
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Please do not do that.

[quote] Basically, I disagree with your assumption that people are scum.[/quote]

I really wish you would stop misquoting me, oleman47. It is really irritating.

People are people. They are prejudiced, greedy, slothful, selfish and self-centered. They are also kind, generous, faithful, honest and trustworthy.

Some people are scum, but People are not scum. They are just people. Fallible and far, far short of perfection.

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Old 05-12-2001, 08:54 AM   #14
yoswif yoswif is offline
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Monopolies cannot exist in a free market. Monopolies can only exist if the socialist government restricts competition through tax and regulatory policy. Capitalism, as socialists describe it, can only exist where socialist tax and regulatory policies and socialist judicial activism have destroyed the free market and made it impossible for new businesses to compete against the large corporations in making a particular product like electricity or providing a particular service like oil and gas production.


Government ownership of the education system would certainly qualify as socialist policy which has failed miserably, unless you consider mini-Somalia's a socialist success story. Government ownership of massive portions of politically powerless rural areas of western states is a socialist policy which has failed miserably, unless you think burning up billions of board feet of marketable timber every year is good for the economy or environment of these politically powerless rural areas.
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Old 05-12-2001, 09:39 AM   #15
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"...to each according to his need."

Bob Dole needs a big screen TV (failing eyesight, you know.)

Bob Dole needs a new car. (The neighbor across the street has a new one. Bob Dole needs to keep up.)

Bob Dole needs a larger, newer house. (It's just not fair that Bob Dole has to drive his 6 year-old car past nice new homes every day.)

Bob Dole needs to eat ribeyes rather than sirloins. (All that extra chewing simply exhausts Bob Dole.)

As previously stated...Socialism is a wunnermuss concept until you introduce human beings into the equation. Especially these days in an "I want it and I want it now!" society. Or is it the "<b>They</b> want it so <b>you</b> give it to them now" society. Bob Dole gets confused...

Actual Question: "You didn't finish high school, you don't have a job and already have 2 children. Why did you get pregnant again?"

Actual Answer: "I wanted a new television."

Money for nothing and the chicks are free.

Bob Dole helps when Bob Dole can. Bob Dole especially likes to help others help themselves. Bob Dole is d@mned tired of working Bob Dole's posterior off so some idiot/lazy turd/unfortunate soul can drive a newer car, live in a nicer house and eat better as it sits now. Bob Dole doesn't see a turn even more toward Socialism as an improvement.

If Bob Dole is going to give you money for food (food stamps), Bob Dole wants to determine your food "needs," and you can bet your sweet boopie that Hagen Daaz and ribeyes ain't on the list.

You have a family of X members of Y gender and Z age, you get vouchers for A $$ of meat, B $$ of poultry, C $$ of fruits and vegetables, etc. that meet the nutritional needs of your family. Figure it out: Ice cream is a "treat" -- not a "need" -- and there are a lot of people not spending Bob Dole's dime that don't get those treats (Bob Dole's childhood family included).

Cable television isn't a <i>need</i>. (And maybe you ought to be reading a book instead of staring at the ion bombardment tube, anyway. Maybe you'd learn something...like language skills.) Functional air conditioning in the car isn't a <i>need</i>. That pack of smokes? Not a need either. Bob Dole is really sorry you sneezed, but a sneeze does not warrant a visit to the ER. (You know. Dr. ER, your primary care physician.) You want Bob Dole to pay for your college? Perhaps you should take a class on washing your hair/body/clothes and speaking proper English first. Then we'll talk.

Or is that a violation of the idiot/lazy turd/unfortunate soul's rights?

Okay, maybe Bob Dole got off on a rant here and strayed from the topic. Please allow Bob Dole to digress...

Perhaps Uncle Sammy could use the money to seed private enterprise that would compete with the utilities (or whatever) that are tightening the thumbscrews. Bob Dole really doesn't think more government is the answer.

Heck...use some of those government Y2K hires (that are currently working on more bureaucrat created crap so they weren't "displaced" when the Y2K scare ended) to target something that's actually useful for some other purpose than creating more crap. A product, perhaps?
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