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if we needed to get rid of capitalism, could we?


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1 hour ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:



I don't understand your question. If we're free to own things and trade them of our own accord, it's entirely in our hands what type of agreement we make. It can become legally binding so that if someone breaks the agreement we can take it to court tho.

yes, there is a societal expectation that transactions are on a basis of trade, and infrastructure to support it. this is something that we as people wrote as rules. no one came down from a mountain with them carved on stone tablets. ASSUMING those rules are not good for us, like if they actively harm us now, what I am asking is then what is there to be done about that?

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13 minutes ago, gisiebob said:

yes, there is a societal expectation that transactions are on a basis of trade, and infrastructure to support it. this is something that we as people wrote as rules. no one came down from a mountain with them carved on stone tablets. ASSUMING those rules are not good for us, like if they actively harm us now, what I am asking is then what is there to be done about that?

They don't harm us more than something else, because there isn't a better system to replace it with if we value freedom and know how humans can be. It's an infrastructure that considers incentive, which is necessary because someone can choose to use the resource how they want. If you can find another way to cover incentive, then please talk about it.

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2 hours ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

They don't harm us more than something else, because there isn't a better system to replace it with if we value freedom and know how humans can be. It's an infrastructure that considers incentive, which is necessary because someone can choose to use the resource how they want. If you can find another way to cover incentive, then please talk about it.

I am trying to work with your inclination for repetition. how do we find out if there is a better system, or I guess how did we? 

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29 minutes ago, gisiebob said:

I am trying to work with your inclination for repetition. how do we find out if there is a better system, or I guess how did we? 

There is currently no better system, that's what I'm trying to say XD. If you can come up with one, though it's all very vague from what you said, then you can show that there's a way to make it work together where we can be free and at the same time as have incentive to give to others, where we won't 'lose out' from doing so. Because if we want something for a project of our own, but we don't have anything of value to offer, why would they give it to us instead of someone else who could give them something of value? We don't have unlimited resources, especially if it's something that takes a lot to make, and then you can't meet demand. Etc.

I'm just trying to paint a picture so that you can see why we need the current system, so to find something better, it has to be able to replace it and handle everything it could, but also not encourage by its nature .. greed, I guess? If I get why you want to get rid of it.

 

So, to find if there's a better system, first you have to understand what the one we have can do, and be able to come up with one that does the same but also better.
Second answer, including to the title of the thread, to find out if there's a better system that we could replace it with, you have to conceptualize one, theorize around it, and you don't need to put it to the test at first if it's just to prove the concept, you just have to show how in theory it can do better, and then once more people are on board and they see the appeal for it, that's when you can test it and see if it works in practice, with people having a reason to believe in it.


How we did it in the past, I don't know in detail because history is not one my interests, so don't quote me on any of this, but I think it came bit by bit because it was still in flux, and they ended up wanting to uphold ownership, independence and freedom including in the market, so that got put in place more and more, maybe more through some times and events than others.

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46 minutes ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

So, to find if there's a better system, first you have to understand what the one we have can do, and be able to come up with one that does the same but also better.
Second answer, including to the title of the thread, to find out if there's a better system that we could replace it with, you have to conceptualize one, theorize around it, and you don't need to put it to the test if it's just to prove the concept, you just have to show how in theory it can do better, and then once more people are on board and they see the appeal for it, that's when you can test it and see if it works in practice, from people having a reason to believe in it.

so, you then understand what I am wanting to discuss...but are just naysaying things instead 'cause...?

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5 hours ago, gisiebob said:

so, you then understand what I am wanting to discuss...but are just naysaying things instead 'cause...?

I have no idea what you're talking about, maybe you could try to understand someone's point, or bring something to the talk. The question was could we get rid of capitalism, and I've been saying from the start that no we couldn't.  And I've been saying why.
I put what the ways are for it to happen, but I think it's not possible, because there's no better system that we'd be able to use, considering how humans are, and what we've built up with it and what it's there for, and in the context that we value freedom. Some people have let go of that value and could argue that some kind of communist system would be better, but that's why I argue that because of how the government is, it would be very bad for the people and we'd lose a lot more than what we'd bargained for.
All of those things are important things to the talk.

It's always possible that something exists that people haven't thought about. I'm not able to come up with a system that'd be better, but I'm open to one and being shown wrong.
I can dream up better systems, but none of them are realistic, they're more utopic, just like a lot of things I could want to work on earth.

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15 hours ago, Epic Tetus said:

- Renting rooms in your own house: Rent is a weird issue for a lot of reasons. You could probably make some kind of argument that rent isn't inherently capitalist. No one will probably bother though, because most anti-capitalists really hate the idea of rent, and believe that access to shelter and other basic needs should be universally granted.

"[Landlords] are the only one of the three orders whose revenue costs them neither labour nor care, but comes to them, as it were, of its own accord, and independent of any plan or project of their own. That indolence, which is the natural effect of the ease and security of their situation, renders them too often, not only ignorant, but incapable of that application of mind."

 

“The rent of land, it may be thought, is frequently no more than a reasonable profit or interest for the stock laid out by the landlord upon its improvement. This, no doubt, may be partly the case upon some occasions.... The landlord demands” (1) “a rent even for unimproved land, and the supposed interest or profit upon the expense of improvement is generally an addition to this original rent.” (2) “Those improvements, besides, are not always made by the stock of the landlord, but sometimes by that of the tenant. When the lease comes to be renewed, however, the landlord commonly demands the same augmentation of rent as if they had been all made by his own.” (3) “He sometimes demands rent for what is altogether incapable of human improvement.” - Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations

 

The rest of the cases you mentioned are those where modern capitalism has created its own special corner of hell: you have to buy and own the property in question (car, computer), have to pay for maintenance, gas, etc. and most of the money still goes to the company you work for. It's basically having to pay so you can work.

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16 hours ago, Epic Tetus said:

Yeah, both those examples would be capitalist endeavors. Capitalism is about the relationship between capital and labor. The guy who owns his own computer and builds websites for people is not necessarily engaging in a capitalist endeavor as he is the labor and the owner of the capital. He gets all the proceeds of his own labor.

 

If he instead works for someone else, who has him use a computer they own to produce websites, then sells the websites to clients, then the guy will not get the proceeds of his own labor. That value he creates goes to the owner, who then pays him for his labor. Integral to this relationship is the concept of exploitation: the laborer will always be paid LESS than the value of the work they do. That difference between the amount of value created by the laborer and the amount the laborer is paid is where the capitalist can find profit.

There is a whole continuum of situations.   I can imagine someone who is paid to write software, and their computer represents only a minor part of their total cost of doing business.  At the other extreme, the are just managing jobs that other people submit to a very expensive computer cluster they have purchased which represents most of the costs.

 

Training is another tricky part of capitalism.   Education takes a lot of time and money - in a sense it is also capital. In the modern world people often borrow money in order to pay for education, and that education increases their productivity.  Very similar to conventional capital

 

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11 hours ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

The question was could we get rid of capitalism, and I've been saying from the start that no we couldn't. 

 

11 hours ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

It's always possible that something exists that people haven't thought about. I'm not able to come up with a system that'd be better, but I'm open to one and being shown wrong.

if you are in fact open to people thinking about it, then why are you insisting that it can't be done?

 

or,

if it cannot be done, why would it be of a concern that you must try and correct? would it not be more advantageous for you to leave conversations such as this to their apparent delusions, such that they do not become more fit towards convincing others of ideas that are in reality are harmful, as per your perspective?

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9 minutes ago, gisiebob said:

 

if you are in fact open to people thinking about it, then why are you insisting that it can't be done?

 

or,

if it cannot be done, why would it be of a concern that you must try and correct? would it not be more advantageous for you to leave conversations such as this to their apparent delusions, such that they do not become more fit towards convincing others of ideas that are in reality are harmful, as per your perspective?

I say what I think, and I do my best to explain it, and I leave things open so that someone can show something different, but I still try to put it at a level that's realistic, else what's the point of asking the question? It's not just to fantasize right? It could be interesting to hear theories for an alternate system that could work. If you actually care about finding those ideas, try to find them. My thoughts don't stop anyone from exploring that :P

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It would be nice, but it isn't terribly realistic, especially without a worldwide simultaneous uprising.  I see a lot of leftists talking about electoralism being pointless and how there has to be a revolution... which is somewhat accurate... but they are waiting for a revolution that is not going to come. There are more immediate things we can be doing over the coming years or decades to improve conditions.

 

If it can be drilled into people's heads that corporations are not inherently more efficient or will respect people more than governments... in the US there is this prevalent idea that people like their health insurance. Usually until they actually have to use it. Because there is such a strong barrage of "government services are inefficient"... while the US spends far, far more per capita on healthcare than any other country and insurance, pharmaceutical, and other companies make insane profits...

 

Meanwhile the West still actively fights off any leftist regime or revolution overseas while expanding corporate reach and we'll see more things like this in the future... https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-03-27/prospera-in-honduras-a-private-tech-city-now-open-for-business

 

Capitalism needs and deserves overthrowing, but there needs to be a plan to replace it, and that hasn't been developed. Part of it is that both capitalists and socialists/communists are both still operating off of economic theories hundreds of years old.

 

At one time, the theistic monarchy and feudalism could not be overthrown. It took a very long time for capitalism to do it. A lot of revolutions, and a lot of slow reforms.

 

...

 

Right now though, in the US, corporations basically control the government through proxy. It isn't even necessarily "corruption", they outright own politicians and things. Conservatives panic over Biden spending a paltry $2.8 trillion on infrastructure, while we all know that money will 100% be funneled into corporations for projects the corporations want like more freeways.

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6 hours ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

I say what I think, and I do my best to explain it, and I leave things open so that someone can show something different, but I still try to put it at a level that's realistic, else what's the point of asking the question? It's not just to fantasize right? It could be interesting to hear theories for an alternate system that could work. If you actually care about finding those ideas, try to find them. My thoughts don't stop anyone from exploring that :P

so...you are offering your services without incentive, despite how they go against what you see as your personal best interest?

 

I know you have said that we are allowed to just give in our system.

 

what I imagine is a system where you are allowed to just trade if you really want to.

 

but trade is a high cost in a free market where 0$ is standard, expected pricing. would you feel obligated to trade if something was freely offered, and there was an understanding that if there was no trade made the person offering would not be left at a disadvantage from it?

 

 

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6 hours ago, gisiebob said:

so...you are offering your services without incentive, despite how they go against what you see as your personal best interest?

 

I know you have said that we are allowed to just give in our system.

 

what I imagine is a system where you are allowed to just trade if you really want to.

 

but trade is a high cost in a free market where 0$ is standard, expected pricing. would you feel obligated to trade if something was freely offered, and there was an understanding that if there was no trade made the person offering would not be left at a disadvantage from it?

 

 

If people are allowed to trade, then most of the time that's what's going to happen, changing people's attitudes is a long endeavor and even then if most want value in return because they can't give everything away, then it comes to the same.  I mentioned how I think there does needs to be consideration for incentive.
I think services are easier to give if it comes more naturally to someone, if it's their passion, etc, but it's another story when we talk about limited resources or items produced that may not be able to fit all demand. If they would even want to produce it if there was no incentive.

Would I be willing to offer certain services or advice for free? Yes, But I wouldn't be able to do it for everyone if there was high demand. I'd have to consider what value I can get because if it uses a lot of my time and I have projects that needs things or people who also value their time, then it has to be worth their while.

Those are all things that are worth considering.
If I was someone dedicated to only helping people, and not my own ambitions and other passions, then I could focus my attention all on that, and only need food and shelter and travel, but in reality I want more than that, and even if we change attitudes and somehow try to let people have different expectations in a lot of places, the value of time and resources will always play a part, and I'll need flexible incentive for some things (ie money does that right now).

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@Sarah-Sylviaok. but imagine at least the basics of life, made in good quality, reliably put on the market for free, and the other side of that coin, that you had the security of knowing that you could be a part of society, helping the folk around you by volunteering at the free stuff industry without having to be paid, and without that endangering you because the basics are just available. how would that affect a free market?

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1 hour ago, gisiebob said:

@Sarah-Sylviaok. but imagine at least the basics of life, made in good quality, reliably put on the market for free, and the other side of that coin, that you had the security of knowing that you could be a part of society, helping the folk around you by volunteering at the free stuff industry without having to be paid, and without that endangering you because the basics are just available. how would that affect a free market?

Well, I've actually talked with a friend of mine about something like this, and we would both want it. I guess one thing about that can make it complicated is quality. Without incentive why would someone work on that when they could do something else? Unless it's local. Especially for food, without the free market incentive then the quality might be bad, I don't trust government standards and quality so I don't know how I feel about it being public, but it could be private with government funding, which could still be very complicated XD. I wouldn't mind if all local areas would have public gardens where anyone could help out to grow that food, though that would have to be well supervised too.
Difficult but definitely not impossible to pull of in some ways, so sure, I think for basics like food it could be good. Or universal basic income to simplify it :P But we still need enough people being productive, so it can't be too high or go past a certain budget.

But yes, I think it's possible, and that could be a step in a good direction.
Not everyone wants to volunteer without incentive, but if it's local then at least then you have more reason to want to help and make sure things are growing well and all that.


In a way we do have smaller scale things like soup kitchens and other non-profit or volunteer work, just not for something that would be for everyone.

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1 hour ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

Well, I've actually talked with a friend of mine about something like this, and we would both want it. I guess one thing about that can make it complicated is quality. Without incentive why would someone work on that when they could do something else? Unless it's local. Especially for food, without the free market incentive then the quality might be bad, I don't trust government standards and quality so I don't know how I feel about it being public, but it could be private with government funding, which could still be very complicated XD. I wouldn't mind if all local areas would have public gardens where anyone could help out to grow that food, though that would have to be well supervised too.
Difficult but definitely not impossible to pull of in some ways, so sure, I think for basics like food it could be good. Or universal basic income to simplify it :P But we still need enough people being productive, so it can't be too high or go past a certain budget.

But yes, I think it's possible, and that could be a step in a good direction.
Not everyone wants to volunteer without incentive, but if it's local then at least then you have more reason to want to help and make sure things are growing well and all that.


In a way we do have smaller scale things like soup kitchens and other non-profit or volunteer work, just not for something that would be for everyone.

ok, but what I was asking is how do you think a free market would react to that.

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46 minutes ago, gisiebob said:

ok, but what I was asking is how do you think a free market would react to that.

Well, it'd be hard to implement it everywhere, but ok let's say it was picking up a lot, I don't think there'd be too much of a problem, though I guess there might be a few food companies that would try to lobby politicians to find a way to survive, if they're affected. But I don't think they'd get too far. So I think it would be more or less smooth. The steps to getting more of that in many places would be the challenge. It could be simpler to just do universal basic income and then people can just buy any foods in their means. 😜

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3 hours ago, Sarah-Sylvia said:

Well, it'd be hard to implement it everywhere, but ok let's say it was picking up a lot, I don't think there'd be too much of a problem, though I guess there might be a few food companies that would try to lobby politicians to find a way to survive, if they're affected. But I don't think they'd get too far. So I think it would be more or less smooth. The steps to getting more of that in many places would be the challenge. It could be simpler to just do universal basic income and then people can just buy any foods in their means. 😜

ok, apparently we are just talking about food, and not the basics, but that's ok. so currently thrre are systems in place for that, that are similar to ubi, like foodstamps and companies that make food don't mind, because they still get money. but lets say in an experimental snowglobe we set up an intentional built system that is able to work without currency, with a capacity to serve like 5% of the population, and the people who put their resources freely into that system get supported first by it, but there is a little extra that gets given to just anyone. what would that do to the surrounding market?

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Sarah-Sylvia
56 minutes ago, gisiebob said:

ok, apparently we are just talking about food, and not the basics, but that's ok. so currently thrre are systems in place for that, that are similar to ubi, like foodstamps and companies that make food don't mind, because they still get money. but lets say in an experimental snowglobe we set up an intentional built system that is able to work without currency, with a capacity to serve like 5% of the population, and the people who put their resources freely into that system get supported first by it, but there is a little extra that gets given to just anyone. what would that do to the surrounding market?

In the U.S. yeah. We don't have foodstamps in Canada.
The basics include housing, and that's harder to do because it takes to build and maintain. There's a few places here where someone can be housed, but it's governmental and it's pretty hard to have.

5% of people in on it? because that's already more than people who'd be willing to do volunteer stuff I think. Even with that I don't think it'd work . You'll have people doing what they want, and it might be too much of one thing compared to another or they don't want to specialize since there's less incentive, or do so much for others, since some will be doing other things, like arts or whatever else, so it doesn't get productive with the basics, there might not be enough in one sector, it might end up that some do too much compared to those who don't do as much, and end up bartering what they do have, unless you have specific guidelines about how everyone does certain roles to help the whole commune, but then it'd be communistic.

-You could be lucky with a certain group if they all work well together, but the bigger the population, the less chance it'll work well together.

The system we have right now is easy to make people have incentive to do work and produce stuff that others an benefit from when they have something to offer of value. It still comes down to figuring out how to make a system that would work all together without barter, and if you do allow barter, then might as well have currency since it helps out a lot.

 

But let's say hypothetically it worked, I don't think the other places would care. If they're self sufficient then it's all good, but as soon as you need or want things you don't have there you'll need to trade with other places.

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