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Author Topic: Capitalism Is Evil!  (Read 19206 times) Average Rating: 0
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Marc1152
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« Reply #405 on: December 20, 2010, 12:44:25 PM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.
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« Reply #406 on: December 20, 2010, 01:00:13 PM »

I'm not following you? A first year resident is still an intern. They have a medical degree, but do not poses a full license to practice medicine unsupervised. Is that who you would like to operate on you?

I think he's saying they do perform procedures, albeit supervised.

I was actually trying to get him to rethink his position on experience being a prerequisite to practice. In either case I would like to have a seasoned professional over a resident any day. And who ever says otherwise for the purpose of winning an online debate is fooling no one but himself. Wink
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« Reply #407 on: December 20, 2010, 01:26:30 PM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.

We break up monopolies, regulate banking, food, and pharmaceutical industries, subsidize agriculture, have restrictions on exports, require licenses to run businesses, have minimum wage laws, have tax payer subsidized health care, and have specialized laws designed to increase the power of trade unions...you're right, we don't seem to have a hybrid system anymore, it's pretty much just purely socialist.
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« Reply #408 on: December 20, 2010, 01:36:09 PM »

I'm not following you? A first year resident is still an intern. They have a medical degree, but do not poses a full license to practice medicine unsupervised. Is that who you would like to operate on you?

I think he's saying they do perform procedures, albeit supervised.

I was actually trying to get him to rethink his position on experience being a prerequisite to practice. In either case I would like to have a seasoned professional over a resident any day. And who ever says otherwise for the purpose of winning an online debate is fooling no one but himself. Wink

If you don't have residents, then how do you end up with seasoned professionals? They have to do it at some point in order to become a seasoned professional.

-Nick
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« Reply #409 on: December 20, 2010, 01:54:36 PM »



I have nothing against trade unions, what I do oppose are laws protecting striking workers (not talking about laws protecting them from violence and extortion, those are obviously good, I'm talking about laws that protect them from being dismissed). If workers want to strike and they have enough specialized skills to make their replacement untenable, they should be allowed to and it is a strong bargaining position. Of course, if they're unskilled and the company can easily replace them, nothing should stop the company from firing them all.

The difference is unions negotiate with contracts. Making it impossible for an employer to fire them all. If the employer doesn't breech the contrast and the employee does what he is asked than things usually go in harmony. Breech of contract by employers usually end up in law suits. No matter how unskilled a employee is he has the power to combat capitalistic motivated employers who would use his handicap as a weapon against him.

Many such contracts were imposed with government interference and/or regulation. These should be voided and a new a negotiation process can occur, if agreed upon by both the workers and the employer. If the employer decides to sign such a contract of his own free will,
Free will? What free will? The universe is a meaningless mass self sent into motion. Will has nothing to do with it.

Or so you would have us believe.
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« Reply #410 on: December 20, 2010, 02:15:48 PM »

I'm not following you? A first year resident is still an intern. They have a medical degree, but do not poses a full license to practice medicine unsupervised. Is that who you would like to operate on you?

I think he's saying they do perform procedures, albeit supervised.

I was actually trying to get him to rethink his position on experience being a prerequisite to practice. In either case I would like to have a seasoned professional over a resident any day. And who ever says otherwise for the purpose of winning an online debate is fooling no one but himself. Wink

If you don't have residents, then how do you end up with seasoned professionals? They have to do it at some point in order to become a seasoned professional.

-Nick
Precisely, My point exactly. Experience gives credibility to a degree. Practical and theoretical experience are both necessary to call someone a professional. Those that only hold a degree and call themselves professionals without having real world knowledge aren't professionals. They only aspire to become professionals.
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« Reply #411 on: December 20, 2010, 03:30:37 PM »

I'm not following you? A first year resident is still an intern. They have a medical degree, but do not poses a full license to practice medicine unsupervised. Is that who you would like to operate on you?

I think he's saying they do perform procedures, albeit supervised.

I was actually trying to get him to rethink his position on experience being a prerequisite to practice. In either case I would like to have a seasoned professional over a resident any day. And who ever says otherwise for the purpose of winning an online debate is fooling no one but himself. Wink

If you don't have residents, then how do you end up with seasoned professionals? They have to do it at some point in order to become a seasoned professional.

-Nick
Precisely, My point exactly. Experience gives credibility to a degree. Practical and theoretical experience are both necessary to call someone a professional. Those that only hold a degree and call themselves professionals without having real world knowledge aren't professionals. They only aspire to become professionals.

No, what I said is not your point. I am not saying that experience gives credibility to a degree. In order to gain experience you need to have that degree. You can't just walk into the hospital and say, "Oh, I can perform surgery, call me Dr. Nick". You need to have your PhD in order to be in line for a residency position.

Further my point of the illustration was that if everyone in the world was like you and said, "Could you imagine allowing a surgeon operate on you fresh out of school?" then no one would ever allow a resident to operate on them and then you would never get any new surgeons. One allows a resident to do surgical procedures on them because of the fact that they have a degree and are considered a medical professional even if they've never done that surgery before.

Succinct point, you do not need "real world experience" to be a professional.

-Nick
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« Reply #412 on: December 20, 2010, 03:46:45 PM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.

We break up monopolies, regulate banking, food, and pharmaceutical industries, subsidize agriculture, have restrictions on exports, require licenses to run businesses, have minimum wage laws, have tax payer subsidized health care, and have specialized laws designed to increase the power of trade unions...you're right, we don't seem to have a hybrid system anymore, it's pretty much just purely socialist.

Then you have a profound miss understanding of what constitutes a Capitalist economic system.. A totally unregulated economy does not make it Capitalist or more Capitalist. A Capitalist system is based on the private ownership of the means of production. It is driven by the needs of a separate class of people who control the Money ( the Capitalists). There isn't even a viable Socialist Party in this country.  it
« Last Edit: December 20, 2010, 03:47:31 PM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #413 on: December 20, 2010, 04:46:24 PM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.

We break up monopolies, regulate banking, food, and pharmaceutical industries, subsidize agriculture, have restrictions on exports, require licenses to run businesses, have minimum wage laws, have tax payer subsidized health care, and have specialized laws designed to increase the power of trade unions...you're right, we don't seem to have a hybrid system anymore, it's pretty much just purely socialist.

Then you have a profound miss understanding of what constitutes a Capitalist economic system.. A totally unregulated economy does not make it Capitalist or more Capitalist. A Capitalist system is based on the private ownership of the means of production. It is driven by the needs of a separate class of people who control the Money ( the Capitalists). There isn't even a viable Socialist Party in this country.  it

And the socialists learned long ago that owning the means of production is meaningless if you don't also have open access to channels of distribution. Say I discover an amazing new drug that cures cancer, a couple of my friends get together, rent a warehouse and set up the means of production. I now have an amazing product AND the means of production, but if I go out and try to sell that drug, the FDA comes in and stops me. Then they put forward ridiculous demands that would cost me hundreds of millions of dollars to meet before I can sell my product. Obviously I could never come up with that kind of money, so I'd just be SOL. That's because our system is not capitalist, in a capitalist economy I could sell my drug and make my billions. In our system, the state has usurped channels of distribution to the point of threatening to use the violence of the state against me if I merely distribute my product.

Ownership of capital and the means of production are private in name only since while you're free to produce you're only free to sell or distribute at the pleasure of the state. It doesn't take a genius to realize that if a company can produce but is forbidden under threat of violence from the state to sell their product, the ability to produce becomes irrelevant.

Controlling channels of distribution, be it through regulation, subsidy, embargo, or tariff is no different, in principle, than nationalizing an industry.
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« Reply #414 on: December 20, 2010, 04:59:50 PM »

The government is only protecting it's citizens. What happens if your drug kills someone?
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« Reply #415 on: December 21, 2010, 11:40:55 AM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.

We break up monopolies, regulate banking, food, and pharmaceutical industries, subsidize agriculture, have restrictions on exports, require licenses to run businesses, have minimum wage laws, have tax payer subsidized health care, and have specialized laws designed to increase the power of trade unions...you're right, we don't seem to have a hybrid system anymore, it's pretty much just purely socialist.

Then you have a profound miss understanding of what constitutes a Capitalist economic system.. A totally unregulated economy does not make it Capitalist or more Capitalist. A Capitalist system is based on the private ownership of the means of production. It is driven by the needs of a separate class of people who control the Money ( the Capitalists). There isn't even a viable Socialist Party in this country.  it

And the socialists learned long ago that owning the means of production is meaningless if you don't also have open access to channels of distribution. Say I discover an amazing new drug that cures cancer, a couple of my friends get together, rent a warehouse and set up the means of production. I now have an amazing product AND the means of production, but if I go out and try to sell that drug, the FDA comes in and stops me. Then they put forward ridiculous demands that would cost me hundreds of millions of dollars to meet before I can sell my product. Obviously I could never come up with that kind of money, so I'd just be SOL. That's because our system is not capitalist, in a capitalist economy I could sell my drug and make my billions. In our system, the state has usurped channels of distribution to the point of threatening to use the violence of the state against me if I merely distribute my product.

Ownership of capital and the means of production are private in name only since while you're free to produce you're only free to sell or distribute at the pleasure of the state. It doesn't take a genius to realize that if a company can produce but is forbidden under threat of violence from the state to sell their product, the ability to produce becomes irrelevant.

Controlling channels of distribution, be it through regulation, subsidy, embargo, or tariff is no different, in principle, than nationalizing an industry.

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.

Do you honestly believe that there is a major sector that is Socialized or as you would have it, so regulated that it is like being Socialized. Really?

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure
« Last Edit: December 21, 2010, 11:44:52 AM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #416 on: December 21, 2010, 12:45:59 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.
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« Reply #417 on: December 21, 2010, 12:51:58 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

Plus, an amount equal to roughly 200% of the official defense budget is handled off-balance-sheet. It is used for the wars we're fighting. Wanna know why your taxes are gonna go up next year? That's why, * political commentary irrelevant to discussion removed from post *.


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« Reply #418 on: December 21, 2010, 04:54:19 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

Plus, an amount equal to roughly 200% of the official defense budget is handled off-balance-sheet. It is used for the wars we're fighting. Wanna know why your taxes are gonna go up next year? That's why, combined with these insane Bush tax cuts that have again been authorized.

I was ok with you not understanding economics, but when you don't understand taxation, I don't think there's any hope for you in these discussions.

-Nick
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« Reply #419 on: December 21, 2010, 04:55:00 PM »

Is this about investment tips or morality?


Neither. This is about the economic system known as capitalism and why it is or is not evil.

-Nick

So it is about morality, which was the point of my question. Discussions about cyclical stocks and supply/demand don't really address the issue, do they?

Actually, they're essential to the discussion. If one doesn't understand the laws of economics and the consequences of economic actions, they're hardly in a place to offer an opinion on the matter. For without this knowledge (and often even with, it's not a simple system) the most best of intentioned change could lead to terrible results. For example, if a country decided to just print extra money and give everyone a million dollars...it should be clear that even this act of giving to the poor is evil because the inevitable result would be hyperinflation making that million dollars worthless and wiping out existing wealth causing widespread devastation.

Even the most apparently benevolent act can be a evil if it has negative unintended consequences. Economics teaches how to provide basic predictions of these consequences and thus the ability to determine if an act, regardless of the intention, will end up being good or bad. In the world of economics, right and wrong are not things that are easy to know before hand; often, the 'morality' of an act can often only be clearly seen years later.

This is well said. It assumes that the capitalist in question is as concerned about these matters as you are. My experience on Wall Street is that hardly anyone is. This doesn't mean they are all evil people. They are not. But the system rewards profit and those who earn profit. How that profit comes about or at whose expense is not much discussed. I think you'd agree that in most firms, it simply doesn't matter. Are we compliant? I.e., within the strict letter of the law? That is the most I have ever heard considered. I'm sure I hardly need mention that legal and ethical are far from congruent concepts, unless one is Socrates. Or Christ.

I once made a decision that blew up the foreign exchange of a medium-sized country. I received a pretty sharp slap on the wrist (several, in fact), but that was all, even though I am sure my mistake cost many, many people quite a lot of money by my standards. Why wasn't I fired? It wasn't a very big market or a very big client. At the end of the year, I was promoted on schedule and given a generous raise. Another day in paradise.



You aren't even talking about capitalism anymore.... You're talking about the hybrid system in place in the US today...... I also don't see what your anecdotal evidence adds to the conversation.

-Nick

The USA does not have a Hybrid system. It is a country where the Capitalist class is firmly entrenched. The two parties are both Capitalist Parties. Whenever a Socialist Party has gained some influence, it is hounded and harassed ( see FBI Co-intel Project). Norman Thomas got one million votes while sitting in a Jail cell.

The ordinary citizens are not without power and can force concessions. That does not make it a Hybrid.

We break up monopolies, regulate banking, food, and pharmaceutical industries, subsidize agriculture, have restrictions on exports, require licenses to run businesses, have minimum wage laws, have tax payer subsidized health care, and have specialized laws designed to increase the power of trade unions...you're right, we don't seem to have a hybrid system anymore, it's pretty much just purely socialist.

Then you have a profound miss understanding of what constitutes a Capitalist economic system.. A totally unregulated economy does not make it Capitalist or more Capitalist. A Capitalist system is based on the private ownership of the means of production. It is driven by the needs of a separate class of people who control the Money ( the Capitalists). There isn't even a viable Socialist Party in this country.  it

And the socialists learned long ago that owning the means of production is meaningless if you don't also have open access to channels of distribution. Say I discover an amazing new drug that cures cancer, a couple of my friends get together, rent a warehouse and set up the means of production. I now have an amazing product AND the means of production, but if I go out and try to sell that drug, the FDA comes in and stops me. Then they put forward ridiculous demands that would cost me hundreds of millions of dollars to meet before I can sell my product. Obviously I could never come up with that kind of money, so I'd just be SOL. That's because our system is not capitalist, in a capitalist economy I could sell my drug and make my billions. In our system, the state has usurped channels of distribution to the point of threatening to use the violence of the state against me if I merely distribute my product.

Ownership of capital and the means of production are private in name only since while you're free to produce you're only free to sell or distribute at the pleasure of the state. It doesn't take a genius to realize that if a company can produce but is forbidden under threat of violence from the state to sell their product, the ability to produce becomes irrelevant.

Controlling channels of distribution, be it through regulation, subsidy, embargo, or tariff is no different, in principle, than nationalizing an industry.

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.

Do you honestly believe that there is a major sector that is Socialized or as you would have it, so regulated that it is like being Socialized. Really?

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Yes, because the military never buys anything at prices much higher than fair market from their contractors.......

-Nick
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« Reply #420 on: December 21, 2010, 05:29:20 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The Corporate Food Industry is about making money. Making food is merely how they make money. The Pharmaceutical industry is primarily concerned with making money, making drugs is how they make money. Etc.

The Health Care Industry cant figure out how to cover everyone . But when it's socialized the problem is solved overnight.
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« Reply #421 on: December 21, 2010, 06:05:48 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.
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« Reply #422 on: December 21, 2010, 06:11:27 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

LOL. Please, break it down for us.
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« Reply #423 on: December 21, 2010, 07:07:04 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

LOL. Please, break it down for us.

EO won the civil war in Angola and provided the government security for two and a half years at a total cost of around $80 million. Afghanistan is about half the size of Angola, but about twice the population. Requiring more contract soldiers on the ground but somewhat simplifying logistics; however, the lack of a port city in Afghanistan complicates logistics but things like being closer to the former USSR (the source of many of the company's weapons) probably make the logistics cost a wash.

So assuming twice the soldiers (twice as large of a population) for twice as long (5 years), we're at $320 million. I thought I'd throw the figure a couple billion out there so there wasn't really room for debate. But the cost would probably have been well under a billion and even under half a billion.

I know a billion dollars is something the government bureaucracy flushes down the toilet in the morning, but a private company can do quite a bit with it. As I said, EO essentially conquered a nation twice the size of Afghanistan (the government was on the ropes when they hired them) for $80 million.

Oh, and I should also add that the Sierra Leone operation was even cheaper at around $20 million a year.
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« Reply #424 on: December 21, 2010, 07:22:05 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

LOL. Please, break it down for us.

EO won the civil war in Angola and provided the government security for two and a half years at a total cost of around $80 million. Afghanistan is about half the size of Angola, but about twice the population. Requiring more contract soldiers on the ground but somewhat simplifying logistics; however, the lack of a port city in Afghanistan complicates logistics but things like being closer to the former USSR (the source of many of the company's weapons) probably make the logistics cost a wash.

So assuming twice the soldiers (twice as large of a population) for twice as long (5 years), we're at $320 million. I thought I'd throw the figure a couple billion out there so there wasn't really room for debate. But the cost would probably have been well under a billion and even under half a billion.

I know a billion dollars is something the government bureaucracy flushes down the toilet in the morning, but a private company can do quite a bit with it. As I said, EO essentially conquered a nation twice the size of Afghanistan (the government was on the ropes when they hired them) for $80 million.

Military conflicts aren't math problems. That's something the Wiz Kids attempted with Vietnam, e.g. they tried to determine the cost of the war through round (bullet) expenditure. Where X rounds are expended, then Y progress should be realized. No two conflicts are the same, whether it be outside forces, politics, ROEs, religion, will power, etc. working on the situation. Additionally, the cost of our higher technological military, in desire to minimize personal and civilian losses, increases the operating costs of the "marching army".

Therefore, this oversimplification and false comparison, is not a viable analogy for mismanagement of military resources.

Also, the actual 'war' is the easy part. Post-conflict regional stability directed through MOOTW ROEs make operations tedious for the purpose of maintaining the best possible public image (politics). All of this, with political media attempting to push personal agendas.
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« Reply #425 on: December 21, 2010, 08:26:04 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

LOL. Please, break it down for us.

EO won the civil war in Angola and provided the government security for two and a half years at a total cost of around $80 million. Afghanistan is about half the size of Angola, but about twice the population. Requiring more contract soldiers on the ground but somewhat simplifying logistics; however, the lack of a port city in Afghanistan complicates logistics but things like being closer to the former USSR (the source of many of the company's weapons) probably make the logistics cost a wash.

So assuming twice the soldiers (twice as large of a population) for twice as long (5 years), we're at $320 million. I thought I'd throw the figure a couple billion out there so there wasn't really room for debate. But the cost would probably have been well under a billion and even under half a billion.

I know a billion dollars is something the government bureaucracy flushes down the toilet in the morning, but a private company can do quite a bit with it. As I said, EO essentially conquered a nation twice the size of Afghanistan (the government was on the ropes when they hired them) for $80 million.

Military conflicts aren't math problems. That's something the Wiz Kids attempted with Vietnam, e.g. they tried to determine the cost of the war through round (bullet) expenditure. Where X rounds are expended, then Y progress should be realized. No two conflicts are the same, whether it be outside forces, politics, ROEs, religion, will power, etc. working on the situation. Additionally, the cost of our higher technological military, in desire to minimize personal and civilian losses, increases the operating costs of the "marching army".

Perhaps they should have done a similar analysis from the North Vietnamese perspective, then they would have seen that a centralized approach to warfare was inherently less economical and less effective. Can't really blame them, with the notable exception of Napoleon no general of a major military power had ever fully appreciated the benefits of a decentralized operational command structure (and he only decentralized it at the level of the corps). Sure, guerrilla warfare was used when all other options were untenable, but it was never viewed as an ideal doctrine.

The problem wasn't that they attempted to quantify the economic costs of war, it would be foolish to enter into any situation without a cost analysis. The problem was that they were doing this analysis independent of tactical and operational doctrines...making it pointless. Strategy is the least important part of a military doctrine, yet it's all the ever managed to address.

Quote
Therefore, this oversimplification and false comparison, is not a viable analogy for mismanagement of military resources.

Cost to win the war in Angola and maintain the peace for 2 years was $80 million, cost thus far in Afghanistan is, by the latest number I found, $377 billion. The $80 million number includes salaries of soldiers, cost of equipment, and ALL involved costs (including a nice profit margin), the $377 billion number does not include soldiers base pay, the cost of most the equipment, or anything else that is covered in the standard military budget.

Are you seriously going to argue that the situation in Afghanistan is over 4700 times more difficult than the situation in Angola was? Because that's how much more we're spending (actually more if you calculated in soldiers base pay, cost of equipment, etc.).

Quote
Also, the actual 'war' is the easy part. Post-conflict regional stability directed through MOOTW ROEs make operations tedious for the purpose of maintaining the best possible public image (politics). All of this, with political media attempting to push personal agendas.

The $80 million figure was over a course of 2.5 years, much of which was maintaining the peace and EO did quite well at maintaining the peace. Then the UN and US pressured the Angolan government to cancel their contract and EO was replaced with a UN peacekeeping force, which was about 20 times as large, civil war quickly broke out again and the UN was unable to contain UNITA.

And yes, I understand the problems with ROE's, politics, media, etc. These combined with an inefficient bureaucracy simply make the military ineffective. The problem isn't with the soldiers on the ground, PMC's are mostly made up of former soldiers with experience and training from national armies and though their operational doctrines are often superior to those of national armies, the squad level tactics they use are usually identical to those used by special forces in western militaries. But the bureaucratic concerns and established doctrine are clearly hampering military operations.

A private company is simply more flexible, the ROE's are usually less restrictive, while there may be politics in any corporation, they don't even come close to those found in national miiltaries, and the influence of the media on these companies is nominal in comparison. Another advantage is that they carry no national flag, the us could give foreign aid to Afghanistan to hire PMC's to defend itself against the Taliban and if Afghanistan hires them directly, they will not be seen as a foreign invader, at lest not in the same way our national military often is, simply as mercenaries part of the local military. EO had a track record of getting along very well with the local populations and undermining the rebel's bases of support.

Every situation in war is different, which is why you need a team of specialized soldiers on the ground who have wide latitude to adapt and change tactics, doctrines, and ROE's as they see necessary. This can't happen in a war that's being micromanaged by a central command and we're simply unwilling to give individual squad leaders the latitude they need to fight the conflict properly; PMC's are willing to do that.
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« Reply #426 on: December 22, 2010, 09:35:10 AM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

Plus, an amount equal to roughly 200% of the official defense budget is handled off-balance-sheet. It is used for the wars we're fighting. Wanna know why your taxes are gonna go up next year? That's why, * political commentary irrelevant to discussion removed from post *.


As I said in my previous warning on this matter, a primary focus on discussing government policy and the politicians who craft that policy--in this case, direct and irrelevant commentary about the Bush tax cuts--is politics and is therefore forbidden on the Public Boards. You have been warned about this before, so you are now receiving this formal and public warning to last for the next three weeks. Politics on the Public Boards is forbidden. Continuation to ignore this rule will result in harsher penalties than this.

If you don't yet have access to the private Politics board, the place on this forum where discussion of politics is permitted, please petition Fr. Chris via private message for this access. If you think this warning unfair, feel free to appeal if via private message to Fr. George.

- PeterTheAleut

Duly noted, with my apologies.
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« Reply #427 on: December 22, 2010, 10:47:01 AM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  
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« Reply #428 on: December 22, 2010, 12:24:09 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.

Quote
That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Unfortunately, militaries don't exist to live up to historical standards, they exist to win wars. There are several examples of militaries that lived up well to historical standards, but were not at all good at what they did. The French military was considered the most powerful on earth in 1940...by historical standards...but we saw how that worked out. The reality is that though they are certainly the best equipped and supplied military on earth, their performance just hasn't been up to par for the last 50-60 years and performance is the only fair way to judge. The military is certainly not worth what we're paying them. As pointed out above, it would probably be prudent to privatize many of our military ventures.

Quote
Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  

No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.
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« Reply #429 on: December 22, 2010, 01:15:35 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.

Quote
That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Unfortunately, militaries don't exist to live up to historical standards, they exist to win wars. There are several examples of militaries that lived up well to historical standards, but were not at all good at what they did. The French military was considered the most powerful on earth in 1940...by historical standards...but we saw how that worked out. The reality is that though they are certainly the best equipped and supplied military on earth, their performance just hasn't been up to par for the last 50-60 years and performance is the only fair way to judge. The military is certainly not worth what we're paying them. As pointed out above, it would probably be prudent to privatize many of our military ventures.

Quote
Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  

No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.


Okay..but that would not be me since I have always been on the Left.

When I was in college I went up to a Marine Recruter on Campus and asked him a few questions:

If I join, will you teach me how to use a gun?

Yes

an M-16?

Of course

How about explosives?

If you want

Urban insurgency tactics. Will you teach me Urban insurgency?

He then got it, and told me to get the --------- fill in blank.. outa here !

  No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

Straw Man argument.. Nice try.

Btw.. free from all political considerations, you dont think we could flood Afghanistan with troops and have our way ( "Their Way"..not mine).

Free from all moral considerations, you dont think we could wipe out Afghanistan in 5 minutes with the push of a button?

The Marine Corp is as tightly run an organization as you will find. They break stuff and kill people very fast. The US Military is the most powerful on the face of the Earth. That doesn't mean they can win every Brush War every time. But they are the most powerful force every created in History. And they are Government Run. I dont think the point needs to be belabored any more than that.
« Last Edit: December 22, 2010, 01:20:44 PM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #430 on: December 22, 2010, 02:48:08 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.

Quote
That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Unfortunately, militaries don't exist to live up to historical standards, they exist to win wars. There are several examples of militaries that lived up well to historical standards, but were not at all good at what they did. The French military was considered the most powerful on earth in 1940...by historical standards...but we saw how that worked out. The reality is that though they are certainly the best equipped and supplied military on earth, their performance just hasn't been up to par for the last 50-60 years and performance is the only fair way to judge. The military is certainly not worth what we're paying them. As pointed out above, it would probably be prudent to privatize many of our military ventures.

Quote
Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  

No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.


Okay..but that would not be me since I have always been on the Left.

When I was in college I went up to a Marine Recruter on Campus and asked him a few questions:

If I join, will you teach me how to use a gun?

Yes

an M-16?

Of course

How about explosives?

If you want

Urban insurgency tactics. Will you teach me Urban insurgency?

He then got it, and told me to get the --------- fill in blank.. outa here !

LOL...on the bright side, you can now take classes on Urban insurgency online. Wink

Quote
No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

Straw Man argument.. Nice try.

It's what happens when you present the military as an ideal economic model.

Quote
Btw.. free from all political considerations, you dont think we could flood Afghanistan with troops and have our way ( "Their Way"..not mine).

Oh, we could probably win the conflict by putting a couple million troops on the ground...but that just makes my point, that's not a cost effective approach. The examples I gave of Executive Outcomes counterinsurgency campaigns is a model for cost effectiveness of military operations.

Quote
Free from all moral considerations, you dont think we could wipe out Afghanistan in 5 minutes with the push of a button?

It's not moral considerations that are stopping us, it's the cost of the political and economic fallout. And again, considering several other countries have the same capability and spend far less on their militaries, it's not a good example of economic efficiency.

Quote
The Marine Corp is as tightly run an organization as you will find. They break stuff and kill people very fast. The US Military is the most powerful on the face of the Earth. That doesn't mean they can win every Brush War every time. But they are the most powerful force every created in History. And they are Government Run. I dont think the point needs to be belabored any more than that.

And yet they got their butts kicked in Vietnam and have done a very poor job in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's not even that they can't win every Brush War...it's that they can't seem to win any of them and certainly not in a timely and cost effective manner. I'm sure they'd do ok against other national armies that are encumbered by the same bureaucracy they're encumbered with...but they just don't cut it against decentralized enemies. It doesn't matter how well trained and well equipped you are, if you don't have a flexible operational doctrine you're going to be at a serious disadvantage and the bureaucracy that runs the military is obsessed with controlling every small detail from the top and simply don't seem to understand this reality.

Private companies are more flexible because they need to be to be competitive and every dollar they can save is another dollar in profit. Had Executive Outcomes given Angola a hundred billion dollar price tag...something closer to what the US military would have to give if they were selling their services...they would never have gotten the job. The bottom line is that the US military is NOT a model of economic efficiency. Yes, by traditional standards they may be the most powerful army the world have ever seen, but if you break it down in terms of power/dollar I'm guessing they don't add up so well. One needs only consider the amount of money we spent in Vietnam vs. the amount of money the North Vietnamese spent, then observe the outcome.

Government bureaucracy just isn't flexible enough to be efficient, whether it's in military operations or control of economic sectors.
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Marc1152
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« Reply #431 on: December 22, 2010, 04:58:18 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.

Quote
That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Unfortunately, militaries don't exist to live up to historical standards, they exist to win wars. There are several examples of militaries that lived up well to historical standards, but were not at all good at what they did. The French military was considered the most powerful on earth in 1940...by historical standards...but we saw how that worked out. The reality is that though they are certainly the best equipped and supplied military on earth, their performance just hasn't been up to par for the last 50-60 years and performance is the only fair way to judge. The military is certainly not worth what we're paying them. As pointed out above, it would probably be prudent to privatize many of our military ventures.

Quote
Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  

No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.


Okay..but that would not be me since I have always been on the Left.

When I was in college I went up to a Marine Recruter on Campus and asked him a few questions:

If I join, will you teach me how to use a gun?

Yes

an M-16?

Of course

How about explosives?

If you want

Urban insurgency tactics. Will you teach me Urban insurgency?

He then got it, and told me to get the --------- fill in blank.. outa here !

LOL...on the bright side, you can now take classes on Urban insurgency online. Wink

Quote
No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

Straw Man argument.. Nice try.

It's what happens when you present the military as an ideal economic model.

Quote
Btw.. free from all political considerations, you dont think we could flood Afghanistan with troops and have our way ( "Their Way"..not mine).

Oh, we could probably win the conflict by putting a couple million troops on the ground...but that just makes my point, that's not a cost effective approach. The examples I gave of Executive Outcomes counterinsurgency campaigns is a model for cost effectiveness of military operations.

Quote
Free from all moral considerations, you dont think we could wipe out Afghanistan in 5 minutes with the push of a button?

It's not moral considerations that are stopping us, it's the cost of the political and economic fallout. And again, considering several other countries have the same capability and spend far less on their militaries, it's not a good example of economic efficiency.

Quote
The Marine Corp is as tightly run an organization as you will find. They break stuff and kill people very fast. The US Military is the most powerful on the face of the Earth. That doesn't mean they can win every Brush War every time. But they are the most powerful force every created in History. And they are Government Run. I dont think the point needs to be belabored any more than that.

And yet they got their butts kicked in Vietnam and have done a very poor job in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's not even that they can't win every Brush War...it's that they can't seem to win any of them and certainly not in a timely and cost effective manner. I'm sure they'd do ok against other national armies that are encumbered by the same bureaucracy they're encumbered with...but they just don't cut it against decentralized enemies. It doesn't matter how well trained and well equipped you are, if you don't have a flexible operational doctrine you're going to be at a serious disadvantage and the bureaucracy that runs the military is obsessed with controlling every small detail from the top and simply don't seem to understand this reality.

Private companies are more flexible because they need to be to be competitive and every dollar they can save is another dollar in profit. Had Executive Outcomes given Angola a hundred billion dollar price tag...something closer to what the US military would have to give if they were selling their services...they would never have gotten the job. The bottom line is that the US military is NOT a model of economic efficiency. Yes, by traditional standards they may be the most powerful army the world have ever seen, but if you break it down in terms of power/dollar I'm guessing they don't add up so well. One needs only consider the amount of money we spent in Vietnam vs. the amount of money the North Vietnamese spent, then observe the outcome.

Government bureaucracy just isn't flexible enough to be efficient, whether it's in military operations or control of economic sectors.

I am not disagreeing with very much of what you are saying. What I am saying the even the strongest Military the World has ever seen will have trouble with Guerrilla Warfare.. But we are still the strongest Military the World has ever seen.

and just as an aside, the way to defeat an insurgency is to be more like the British or French Army . No morals, kill anyone that you even think is a threat and let God sort it out. Kick in doors. Have no qualms about Torture..etc etc. The American ethos wont tolerate that sort of thing for long. We are not a good colonial Army.
« Last Edit: December 22, 2010, 05:00:29 PM by Marc1152 » Logged

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« Reply #432 on: December 22, 2010, 06:23:17 PM »

I dont know what you are talking about. The FDA and Medical Establishment are in the hip pocket of the Pharmaceutical Industry. The Agriculture Dept. is in then hip pocket of the Food Industry and the Defense Dept. is in the hip pocket of Defense Contractors. Money talks.


That's a lot of hip pockets.  Grin

I can only think of one and that's the Military which despite corruption ( see above)  is the best run and most able to do it's task than any other sector. It is Government Run. Go figure

Minor comment: The military doesn't "create" any wealth, nor produce anything at all. It is a tool of the state. It is given a budget by Congress and then required to meet basic requirements according to the budget. Acquisitions on a limited and ever changing budgets is difficult, and like everything with people and politicians involved (politicians aren't people), has a tendency to have special interest fingers in everyone else's fruit loops.

And yet, when you ask the question "Who does the best Job at what they do?", it's the Military. In fact, their job is so important that it is unthinkable to have anyone else by the Government run it.

The military does a terrible job, how long have we been fighting in Afghanistan? It's a third world country! Had we hired a private company to do the job, it could have probably been done for a couple billion dollars, if that, and would have been over years ago. The inefficiency of our military in Afghanistan can easily be seen by comparing it to the unparalleled success of the company Executive Outcomes in Angola and Sierra Leone. It seems that the lumbering bureaucracy of the state isn't even capable of fighting wars anymore...private companies are even better at that. The military is NOT the standard we should aim for.

I think that is a wrong assessment. They do what they do very well.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.

Quote
That's not to say that they aren't led into boondoggles but by historical standards they are the strongest military that has ever existed.

Unfortunately, militaries don't exist to live up to historical standards, they exist to win wars. There are several examples of militaries that lived up well to historical standards, but were not at all good at what they did. The French military was considered the most powerful on earth in 1940...by historical standards...but we saw how that worked out. The reality is that though they are certainly the best equipped and supplied military on earth, their performance just hasn't been up to par for the last 50-60 years and performance is the only fair way to judge. The military is certainly not worth what we're paying them. As pointed out above, it would probably be prudent to privatize many of our military ventures.

Quote
Now if you want to say that they don't produce anything ( Like the Food Industry produces food for example) so they can be Socialized, then how about the Health Care Industry? They dont produce anything. They are a service industry. We can start by Socializing Medicine and see how it goes. We consider the Military vital to the country and so we dont leave it up to the Free market. Health Care could be seen the same way.  

No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

That's something people say because they're under some delusion that it's patriotic, not because it's true.


Okay..but that would not be me since I have always been on the Left.

When I was in college I went up to a Marine Recruter on Campus and asked him a few questions:

If I join, will you teach me how to use a gun?

Yes

an M-16?

Of course

How about explosives?

If you want

Urban insurgency tactics. Will you teach me Urban insurgency?

He then got it, and told me to get the --------- fill in blank.. outa here !

LOL...on the bright side, you can now take classes on Urban insurgency online. Wink

Quote
No, I'm saying they're inefficient. Which can be tolerable if you're only using them once a decade or so (it becomes less tolerable when the conflicts last a decade), not ideal, but tolerable. But I certainly don't want any other aspect of the economy, be it the food or healthcare sector, being run like the war in Afghanistan...just like in Afghanistan, we'd never get anything done.

Straw Man argument.. Nice try.

It's what happens when you present the military as an ideal economic model.

Quote
Btw.. free from all political considerations, you dont think we could flood Afghanistan with troops and have our way ( "Their Way"..not mine).

Oh, we could probably win the conflict by putting a couple million troops on the ground...but that just makes my point, that's not a cost effective approach. The examples I gave of Executive Outcomes counterinsurgency campaigns is a model for cost effectiveness of military operations.

Quote
Free from all moral considerations, you dont think we could wipe out Afghanistan in 5 minutes with the push of a button?

It's not moral considerations that are stopping us, it's the cost of the political and economic fallout. And again, considering several other countries have the same capability and spend far less on their militaries, it's not a good example of economic efficiency.

Quote
The Marine Corp is as tightly run an organization as you will find. They break stuff and kill people very fast. The US Military is the most powerful on the face of the Earth. That doesn't mean they can win every Brush War every time. But they are the most powerful force every created in History. And they are Government Run. I dont think the point needs to be belabored any more than that.

And yet they got their butts kicked in Vietnam and have done a very poor job in Iraq and Afghanistan. It's not even that they can't win every Brush War...it's that they can't seem to win any of them and certainly not in a timely and cost effective manner. I'm sure they'd do ok against other national armies that are encumbered by the same bureaucracy they're encumbered with...but they just don't cut it against decentralized enemies. It doesn't matter how well trained and well equipped you are, if you don't have a flexible operational doctrine you're going to be at a serious disadvantage and the bureaucracy that runs the military is obsessed with controlling every small detail from the top and simply don't seem to understand this reality.

Private companies are more flexible because they need to be to be competitive and every dollar they can save is another dollar in profit. Had Executive Outcomes given Angola a hundred billion dollar price tag...something closer to what the US military would have to give if they were selling their services...they would never have gotten the job. The bottom line is that the US military is NOT a model of economic efficiency. Yes, by traditional standards they may be the most powerful army the world have ever seen, but if you break it down in terms of power/dollar I'm guessing they don't add up so well. One needs only consider the amount of money we spent in Vietnam vs. the amount of money the North Vietnamese spent, then observe the outcome.

Government bureaucracy just isn't flexible enough to be efficient, whether it's in military operations or control of economic sectors.

I am not disagreeing with very much of what you are saying. What I am saying the even the strongest Military the World has ever seen will have trouble with Guerrilla Warfare.. But we are still the strongest Military the World has ever seen.

and just as an aside, the way to defeat an insurgency is to be more like the British or French Army . No morals, kill anyone that you even think is a threat and let God sort it out. Kick in doors. Have no qualms about Torture..etc etc. The American ethos wont tolerate that sort of thing for long. We are not a good colonial Army.

That is one approach and it can work, the US successfully dealt with the Islamic insurgency in the PI that way following the Spanish American War; however, it's not the only viable approach as the example I gave in Angola demonstrated. You can't work from a large centralized base, sending out units as needed to put out fires. You need to take the approach the Executive Operations used, constantly keep your forces in the field, offer supplies to villages to gain their sympathy, effectively use propaganda to publicize every atrocity committed by the insurgents, when insurgents do commit atrocities let the locals handle it, hunt them down and take the survivors back to the village where they committed their crimes to let the locals dish our their own punishment (it will often be worse than any torture we could come up with), and form and train local militias to fight insurgents while proving by your actions that you are flexible enough to be able to show up and back them in a firefight. This program was young, but highly successful when Angola canceled the project under US and UN pressure. It fell apart within a year without proper support.

We had this idea in Vietnam, the British had it in Malaya...it was just never implemented well. It needs to be executed by special forces who are constantly in the field and living amongst the locals...not commanders far away in a fortified base. For situations like this, we need to change our idea of what warfare is, on the operational level, it's not two massive armies fighting a war, it's two thousand armies of a few dozen people each fighting a thousand different wars and each one requires different tactics. This requires a level of flexibility that it seems impossible for the military to grasp.

That's the problem with bureaucracy, it can't do a 180 on a moment's notice, it can't be something different in different places and change from day to day. But that flexibility is exactly what you need in asymmetrical warfare...it also happens to be what is needed for business.

The words of Gen. Patton are just as true today as they were in WWII and, sadly, still largely unheeded:

'Fixed fortifications are monuments to man's stupidity.'
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« Reply #433 on: January 19, 2011, 01:40:08 PM »

Too bad this thread died. It's an important topic. Maybe our discussions aren't so important, but people should be thinking about this stuff.
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« Reply #434 on: January 21, 2011, 03:08:13 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."
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« Reply #435 on: January 21, 2011, 03:54:05 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism.

Honest question: Has this position influenced many societies or governments?  I can't recall any nations, "Catholic" or otherwise, adopting Distributism. 

I can understand why they would give both personal/family advice and weigh in on societal issues, e.g. distribution, but to issue a wholesale endorsement of an economic system seems not only odd, but another way in which their teaching has been unheeded. 

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« Reply #436 on: January 21, 2011, 04:28:28 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism.

Honest question: Has this position influenced many societies or governments?  I can't recall any nations, "Catholic" or otherwise, adopting Distributism. 

I can understand why they would give both personal/family advice and weigh in on societal issues, e.g. distribution, but to issue a wholesale endorsement of an economic system seems not only odd, but another way in which their teaching has been unheeded. 



Well, I agree its probably a mistake to construct a "Christian economics," but I think the past Popes have done right when they've openly condemned the evils of both capitalism and socialism.

I don't think 'Distributism' is OFFICIALLY or dogmatically the Catholic social teaching, its largely based on G.K. Chesterton and Belloc's writings trying to apply RC's social teachings.

Right now the whole Red Tory movement in England led by Philip Blond and made up largely of Anglican's and 'Radical Orthodoxy' folk is heavily influencing David Cameron's policies.
http://www.respublica.org.uk/   

It's influenced Dorthy Day and the Catholic social Workers as well as economist E. F. Schumacher, the 'small is beautiful' guy.

Other than that, its probably been most influential in The MONDRAGON Corporation since 1956 - a federation of worker cooperatives based in the Basque region of Spain.
Currently it is the seventh largest Spanish company in terms of turnover and the leading business group in the Basque Country. At the end of 2009 it was providing employment for 85,066 people working in 256 companies.
 In terms of figures, in 2008 the Corporation posted a Total Turnover of 16.8 billion euros, of which 6.5 billion corresponded to Industry, 9 billion to Retail and 1.2 billion to the Finance area.

They build their own schools, hospitals, Churches etc they distribute the wealth. 

The Co-operatives are owned by their worker-members and power is based on the principle of one person, one vote.
It's a very Christian set up, in my opinion, very focused on Social needs, participation, community, a very human way to do things...
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« Reply #437 on: January 21, 2011, 11:53:58 PM »

Thanks for the response, Spiltteeth.  I was familiar with the Red Tories, but didn't know they were of that ilk.
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« Reply #438 on: January 23, 2011, 06:10:56 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.
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« Reply #439 on: January 23, 2011, 07:53:13 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.

Distributionalism?
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« Reply #440 on: January 24, 2011, 09:55:18 AM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.

Everybody has such a down on socialism, and yet my own experience living in a socialist country--and paying taxes there--is that wage earners keep just as much of their income as they do here, except at the top, where they pay more. (This is because of tax cuts that I'm not allowed to refer to by name.) More people own second homes and take exotic vacations than they do here; they have far more vacation and sick time to begin with (five weeks was the average in the country where I lived, with four weeks the legal minimum; but many jobs had six or even seven weeks of vacation as a benefit). If I look at Sweden, to take the country most often vilified, many more people seem to own property than here. I'm only going on anecdotal evidence, but the countries we regard as socialist--France,Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and Spain--all have very high standards of living. I've spent substantial time in many of them and have close friends from all of them. Of course, one thing they also have is much lower defense budgets. That's partly how they pay for it.

And before anyone throws recent disturbances in France in my face, please look at the facts. The government wanted to reduce benefits by less than 2 per cent. This is not evidence of cracks in the facade. It's evidence of hard times. It still leaves the average Frenchman exponentially better off in terms of social benefits than anyone in this country.
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« Reply #441 on: January 24, 2011, 12:35:55 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.

Everybody has such a down on socialism, and yet my own experience living in a socialist country--and paying taxes there--is that wage earners keep just as much of their income as they do here, except at the top, where they pay more. (This is because of tax cuts that I'm not allowed to refer to by name.) More people own second homes and take exotic vacations than they do here; they have far more vacation and sick time to begin with (five weeks was the average in the country where I lived, with four weeks the legal minimum; but many jobs had six or even seven weeks of vacation as a benefit). If I look at Sweden, to take the country most often vilified, many more people seem to own property than here. I'm only going on anecdotal evidence, but the countries we regard as socialist--France,Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and Spain--all have very high standards of living. I've spent substantial time in many of them and have close friends from all of them. Of course, one thing they also have is much lower defense budgets. That's partly how they pay for it.

And before anyone throws recent disturbances in France in my face, please look at the facts. The government wanted to reduce benefits by less than 2 per cent. This is not evidence of cracks in the facade. It's evidence of hard times. It still leaves the average Frenchman exponentially better off in terms of social benefits than anyone in this country.

I would argue that such systems aren't necessarily socialist and, more importantly, would run better if they moved towards a system of distribution. However, countries such as Sweden are closer to distribution than the US, which explains why Sweden is in a better position than America.

America has it backwards in that we tax both income and property. You can't have it both ways.
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« Reply #442 on: January 24, 2011, 01:01:08 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.

Everybody has such a down on socialism, and yet my own experience living in a socialist country--and paying taxes there--is that wage earners keep just as much of their income as they do here, except at the top, where they pay more. (This is because of tax cuts that I'm not allowed to refer to by name.) More people own second homes and take exotic vacations than they do here; they have far more vacation and sick time to begin with (five weeks was the average in the country where I lived, with four weeks the legal minimum; but many jobs had six or even seven weeks of vacation as a benefit). If I look at Sweden, to take the country most often vilified, many more people seem to own property than here. I'm only going on anecdotal evidence, but the countries we regard as socialist--France,Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and Spain--all have very high standards of living. I've spent substantial time in many of them and have close friends from all of them. Of course, one thing they also have is much lower defense budgets. That's partly how they pay for it.

And before anyone throws recent disturbances in France in my face, please look at the facts. The government wanted to reduce benefits by less than 2 per cent. This is not evidence of cracks in the facade. It's evidence of hard times. It still leaves the average Frenchman exponentially better off in terms of social benefits than anyone in this country.

Yea, conservative P. J. O'Rourke distinguishes between "bad socialism" and "good socialism" (just as he does between 'good and bad capitalism)

I know we mustn't turn the Gospel into some mere socially progressive program, but I do think it's important to discuss and imagine what a "Christian" economy would look like.

Orthodox Christian theologian David Heart has suggested a "Anarcho-Monarchist" type set up, like Tolkien kind of envisaged in Lord of the Rings :

http://www.firstthings.com/onthesquare/2010/11/anarcho-monarchism

It's interesting....
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« Reply #443 on: November 15, 2011, 01:50:12 AM »

Capitalism-big, contemporary capitalism- that's what I'm talking about.
May God destroy it.

He said, sipping a Latte on his couch in front of his 52 inch HD TV.

LOL  Smiley
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« Reply #444 on: November 15, 2011, 02:44:22 PM »

I wish the Orthodox had a semi-official stance on economics like the Catholic church, which denounces both capitalism and socialism and promotes distributism. The Red Tory's in Britain are mostly Anglican, but their movement is very close to what I think of as a "Christian economics."

If there were a "like" button, I would "like" this post.

Should I promote Capitalism, which makes me a slave to my private wage-master? Or shall I promote Socialism, which makes me a slave to my government wage-master?

Instead, I promote the economy that allows the most citizens to own property and shuts down unnecessarily large corporations.

Everybody has such a down on socialism, and yet my own experience living in a socialist country--and paying taxes there--is that wage earners keep just as much of their income as they do here, except at the top, where they pay more. (This is because of tax cuts that I'm not allowed to refer to by name.) More people own second homes and take exotic vacations than they do here; they have far more vacation and sick time to begin with (five weeks was the average in the country where I lived, with four weeks the legal minimum; but many jobs had six or even seven weeks of vacation as a benefit). If I look at Sweden, to take the country most often vilified, many more people seem to own property than here. I'm only going on anecdotal evidence, but the countries we regard as socialist--France,Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, and Spain--all have very high standards of living. I've spent substantial time in many of them and have close friends from all of them. Of course, one thing they also have is much lower defense budgets. That's partly how they pay for it.

And before anyone throws recent disturbances in France in my face, please look at the facts. The government wanted to reduce benefits by less than 2 per cent. This is not evidence of cracks in the facade. It's evidence of hard times. It still leaves the average Frenchman exponentially better off in terms of social benefits than anyone in this country.

Yea, conservative P. J. O'Rourke distinguishes between "bad socialism" and "good socialism" (just as he does between 'good and bad capitalism)

I know we mustn't turn the Gospel into some mere socially progressive program, but I do think it's important to discuss and imagine what a "Christian" economy would look like.

Orthodox Christian theologian David Heart has suggested a "Anarcho-Monarchist" type set up, like Tolkien kind of envisaged in Lord of the Rings :

http://www.firstthings.com/onthesquare/2010/11/anarcho-monarchism

It's interesting....


But a king—a king without any real power, that is—is such an ennoblingly arbitrary, such a tender and organically human institution. It is easy to give our loyalty to someone whose only claim on it is an accident of heredity, because then it is a free gesture of spontaneous affection that requires no element of self-deception, and that does not involve the humiliation of having to ask to be ruled.

The ideal king would be rather like the king in chess: the most useless piece on the board, which occupies its square simply to prevent any other piece from doing so, but which is somehow still the whole game. There is something positively sacramental about its strategic impotence. And there is something blessedly gallant about giving one’s wholehearted allegiance to some poor inbred ditherer whose chief passions are Dresden china and the history of fly-fishing, but who nonetheless, quite ex opere operato, is also the bearer of the dignity of the nation, the anointed embodiment of the genius gentis—a kind of totem or, better, mascot.

 Smiley
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« Reply #445 on: December 04, 2011, 10:37:47 PM »

Quote
...Nixon created OPEC and insured that every barrel of oil be sold in us dollars. Instead of the dollar pegged to oil, oil is pegged to the dollar. As soon as the economy crashed the dollar gained tremendously and oil dropped like a rock. In the next few months or so you will witness the slingshot effect. Dollar dropping and oil souring.

NIXON created OPEC?HuhHuh?
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« Reply #446 on: December 06, 2011, 11:53:59 AM »

Quote
...Nixon created OPEC and insured that every barrel of oil be sold in us dollars. Instead of the dollar pegged to oil, oil is pegged to the dollar. As soon as the economy crashed the dollar gained tremendously and oil dropped like a rock. In the next few months or so you will witness the slingshot effect. Dollar dropping and oil souring.

NIXON created OPEC?HuhHuh?

Sorry. Nixon negotiated with OPEC under the threat of military action to insure that oil is bought and sold under the US dollar throughout the world. There was a formal agreement that was signed by OPEC.
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« Reply #447 on: December 07, 2011, 03:14:41 PM »

Quote
...Nixon created OPEC and insured that every barrel of oil be sold in us dollars. Instead of the dollar pegged to oil, oil is pegged to the dollar. As soon as the economy crashed the dollar gained tremendously and oil dropped like a rock. In the next few months or so you will witness the slingshot effect. Dollar dropping and oil souring.

NIXON created OPEC?HuhHuh?

Sorry. Nixon negotiated with OPEC under the threat of military action to insure that oil is bought and sold under the US dollar throughout the world. There was a formal agreement that was signed by OPEC.

I sure would want to see some proof of this. I remember those days quite well, and it did not feel like our government was in a position to negotiate or demand anything.
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