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  • #91
    Originally posted by Rojo View Post
    Yes. That would be democracy. But the Libertarians hate democracy, just as fascists do. The difference is that Libertarians wrap up their hatred of democracy in a lot of "freedom" language.

    "If fascism ever appears in America, it will be call anti-fascism" ~ William S. Burroughs.
    This and your other quote are absolutely correct.
    Libertarianism is a cunard. It's a petit-bourgeouis fascism that wants to use money, as opposed to the state, as a means of control. It's the favored ideology of reactionaries who've internalized the power complexes of their masters.
    It's fascism, but there are less laws! The basic problem I see is this: humans cannot wrap their brain around authority. All major religions do praise heavenly gods, but all of their morals shun getting or maintaining authority (power). All of life has power built-in, and no form of government will ever prevent that. (Now following the claim that because there are no 'perfect people', no one should have a right to political office). And while people do seek power for personal gain, enough checks and balances can turn this personal gain into public gain. This is the success of America's system I think. We've encouraged entrepreneurs and prevented totalitarian leaders from taking hold. Furthermore, these checks and balances make the whole system more stable and prevent the likelihood of a future economic collapse.

    My friend said something valid that I'll throw in here. "Perfect is the enemy of the good".

    Originally posted by Rojo View Post
    It absolutely does not. Human social arrangements have always been egalitarian.
    I think he meant the basic morals of dirt/rocks/plants/ants/bears/pears/coons/moons are no morals, aka the free market.

    Besides, a free market and an egalitarian society are not totally contradictory. You can be partially free and partially structured, which is the most likely of all options because absolutes are extremely rare.

    Originally posted by Rojo View Post
    What percentage of the economy is "barter" ? One percent? I doubt it's even that high. Beyond help me move and I'll give you some beer and pizza, bartering is a myth. There's no anthropology that has discovered barter economies.
    Because they're extremely inefficient. Bartering can work among nations but not efficiently among individuals. Individual instances of bartering being effective among individuals fail to account for the 99% of that society's economy, as you so duly noted.
    Last edited by wiltondeportes; 09-19-2013, 11:48 PM.

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    • #92
      Originally posted by Rojo View Post
      It absolutely does not. Human social arrangements have always been egalitarian.
      Of course, but remember dunbar's number, over 150 people there's no empathy, free market is great for individuals who care only about themselves.

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      • #93
        But if you care about making money, and can't lean on the State to force human behavior at gun point, then even at your most insanely diabolical and self-serving (selfishness is good and people who poke at it are liars and manipulators anyway) then you have to ask yourself, "what do people want...?"
        "Ah, those endless forests, and their horror-haunted gloom! For what eternities have I wandered through them, a timid, hunted creature, starting at the least sound, frightened of my own shadow, keyed-up, ever alert and vigilant, ready on the instant to dash away in mad flight for my life. For I was the prey of all manner of fierce life that dwelt in the forest, and it was in ecstasies of fear that I fled before the hunting monsters."

        Jack london, "Before Adam"

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        • #94
          Originally posted by Mr.Perfidy View Post
          But if you care about making money, and can't lean on the State to force human behavior at gun point, then even at your most insanely diabolical and self-serving (selfishness is good and people who poke at it are liars and manipulators anyway) then you have to ask yourself, "what do people want...?"
          I've just noticed that I'm starting to talk like Ayn Rand, damn.

          I'm not saying that selfishness is good, I mean that we can rely on altruism in such a huge society like ours, so the best economical and political system is the one that could work even if every single individual were 100% egoistical or even psychopathic.

          Altruism should be a plus, not something expected.

          Comment


          • #95
            Originally posted by Rojo View Post
            And rare. Bartering rarely ever happened. People have always used a medium of exchange -- conch shells, wampum, even social credit.
            Actually bartering was used for thousands of years, and still is. Only large (comparatively) cities, city-states, countries or civilizations have created laws requiring that the Gov'ts defined money or currency MUST be accepted as payment for all debts (when offered).

            Yes many commodities have been used, but usually in a smaller geographic area. For example, conch shells had considerable value to inland tribes for inland trade. But a coastal tribe awash in conch shells would not accept a conch shell in return for some fish. Air is a necessary and useful commodity but as it is freely available it has no value, except maybe to sea divers or climbers of high mountains. African tribes count wealth in cattle, but for trade in a larger area cattle are very difficult, they don't pack or ship well, have short storage life and come in a large size only. Over history, gold and silver have had the largest market areas and were therefore most commonly used in large geographic areas.

            Originally posted by TheyCallMeLazarus View Post
            The idea of a fiat currency, as we have, that is NOT mandated by a kabal of private banks, done in absolute secret, and has no elected representatives....any of that would be a huge improvement.
            I'm a little confused as to what you are arguing for or against. A "fiat" currency or money is one that is created "by law". That is, the laws of the Federal Gov't. So here there has to be a Gov't. It could be "NOT mandated by a kabal of private banks", it was done directly by the Fed. Gov't twice, but then elected representative were involved. But if you want a fiat money then someone has to enforce it.

            A "gold standard" is by definition a standard (of some value against something) set by the Fed. Gov't. Yes, it was not the best arrangement, but not as bad as what we have now.

            I would call 'physical goods only' either true money or true barter. Banks have separate meanings for the words money and currency. Think of a hotel coat check room. The coat you give them is equivalent to money. The ticket they give you in return is currency. Well, it's currency that represents something real, real money. Today we have currency that represents nothing because the something it represented has been all spent.

            The U.S. Constitution says "The Congress shall have power to . . . . . . . . .To coin money, regulate the value thereof, and of foreign coin, and fix the standard of weights and measures;"

            Originally Congress could coin (mint) money (silver or gold), and so could anyone else, likewise regulating the value thereof and of foreign coin, . . This last part is exclusive by definition. Congress can set the weight of a (silver or gold) coin of each measure (specific denomination). So, a U.S. gold double-eagle minted by the U.S. must weigh one once of 99% gold, by law. But, using the same weights and measures, anyone else could mint a coin of that weight and purity and call it some other name. The term dollar as paper did not exist, a dollar referred to the Spanish silver dollar, which was where we later got the name.

            To me, a free market would mean a market in which no outside force (such as Gov't) interfered and which used a free money or monies in which no outside force interfered (or owned). Individuals could use the money they wanted to use, which would probably be based on which money they expected to be the most widely accepted in trade.
            Last edited by Cryptocode; 09-20-2013, 05:53 PM.
            "When the search for truth is confused with political advocacy, the pursuit of knowledge is reduced to the quest for power." - Alston Chase

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            • #96
              I think there are really 2 questions:

              1) What would one like to be done in theory, if all could be started over again?
              2) What course would be best to stop the current trends of monetary insanity?

              Answer for 1) I am an extremist when any discussion of "theory" comes up, because that is what the debate is best served by. In this question, I am in favor of a participant-optional, physical goods only economy. By this, I mean that which can feed, clothe, keep you warm, or otherwise take care of bare needs...the reality is that all currency is based on the extraction of resources, at its root. That is often the taking of natural resources, the conversion of those raw materials into something more useful, or human/animal labor. For me, all "currency" should be based on set values according to abundance, effect on the environment/sustainability, amount of labor required to extract, and necessity to society....a "government" would be necessary to enforce these, but involvement in it would be optional insomuch as one does not violate the rights of others or unduly take more than they need.

              In my abstract, theoretical opinion, all talk of capitalism vs communism vs trading gold only is made on the assumption of unlimited growth and unlimited resources....we will all be finding out, if not my lifetime then in my children's, that this is not reality. I wouldn't even call it being an environmentalist; it's just having a calculator and doing the math.

              Answer for 2) Given the global economy, and by that I mean the fact that all goods and services can be traded if not instantly, then with very little trade barriers, most of the "theoretical" will not ever happen....that is reality. The main reason is that it would be impossible, even if some kind of "revolution" occurred in the US or Australia or Peru, to prevent other countries from taking advantage of any ideological change undergone....and especially in the case of the US, I always ask in other forums one simple question:

              Why would the United States change?

              By this I mean that since Bretton Woods, there is no logical reason why the US would ever shake up the boat. We PRINT the world's reserve currency, through a blatantly shady and fascistic mechanism, and it got us prosperity that is unmatched almost anywhere, at least in terms of pure dollar figures, for a long time....one can argue that the debt, trade deficit, that this will end, but that is not a reason to change it for those in charge. Our kabal of private banks get to print the stuff that say, a guy in Argentina that wants to buy oil, must PAY in.....that is pretty damn brilliant. Very devious, unquestionably not democratic, but smart.

              There is really only one option....congress passing a constitutional amendment that puts themselves, or other elected officials, in charge of a publicly owned, democratic federal reserve system. There will be NO change unless something is structurally altered, given the realities of Bretton Woods and what it means for the privately owned banks of "The Fed".

              I am for democracy, as the best possible option.
              "The soul that does not attempt flight; does not notice its chains."

              Comment


              • #97
                Originally posted by TheyCallMeLazarus View Post
                I think there are really 2 questions:

                1) What would one like to be done in theory, if all could be started over again?
                2) What course would be best to stop the current trends of monetary insanity?

                Answer for 1) I am an extremist when any discussion of "theory" comes up, because that is what the debate is best served by. In this question, I am in favor of a participant-optional, physical goods only economy. By this, I mean that which can feed, clothe, keep you warm, or otherwise take care of bare needs...the reality is that all currency is based on the extraction of resources, at its root. That is often the taking of natural resources, the conversion of those raw materials into something more useful, or human/animal labor. For me, all "currency" should be based on set values according to abundance, effect on the environment/sustainability, amount of labor required to extract, and necessity to society....a "government" would be necessary to enforce these, but involvement in it would be optional insomuch as one does not violate the rights of others or unduly take more than they need.

                In my abstract, theoretical opinion, all talk of capitalism vs communism vs trading gold only is made on the assumption of unlimited growth and unlimited resources....we will all be finding out, if not my lifetime then in my children's, that this is not reality. I wouldn't even call it being an environmentalist; it's just having a calculator and doing the math.

                Answer for 2) Given the global economy, and by that I mean the fact that all goods and services can be traded if not instantly, then with very little trade barriers, most of the "theoretical" will not ever happen....that is reality. The main reason is that it would be impossible, even if some kind of "revolution" occurred in the US or Australia or Peru, to prevent other countries from taking advantage of any ideological change undergone....and especially in the case of the US, I always ask in other forums one simple question:

                Why would the United States change?

                By this I mean that since Bretton Woods, there is no logical reason why the US would ever shake up the boat. We PRINT the world's reserve currency, through a blatantly shady and fascistic mechanism, and it got us prosperity that is unmatched almost anywhere, at least in terms of pure dollar figures, for a long time....one can argue that the debt, trade deficit, that this will end, but that is not a reason to change it for those in charge. Our kabal of private banks get to print the stuff that say, a guy in Argentina that wants to buy oil, must PAY in.....that is pretty damn brilliant. Very devious, unquestionably not democratic, but smart.

                There is really only one option....congress passing a constitutional amendment that puts themselves, or other elected officials, in charge of a publicly owned, democratic federal reserve system. There will be NO change unless something is structurally altered, given the realities of Bretton Woods and what it means for the privately owned banks of "The Fed".

                I am for democracy, as the best possible option.
                Do you mean this?
                Accounting is based on physical quantities, a common physical magnitude, or a direct measure of labour-time in place of financial calculation.
                https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

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                • #98
                  Originally posted by TheyCallMeLazarus View Post
                  I think there are really 2 questions:

                  1) What would one like to be done in theory, if all could be started over again?
                  2) What course would be best to stop the current trends of monetary insanity?.
                  1) I also gave my opinion of my best theory in my last paragraph above. I don't think there needs to be any single American system of Gov't or of no Gov't. It would be most desirable if human-sized communities grew into their own desired way of conducting their lives. Some could be democratic, republics, communes, socialistic groups, anarchistic groups, religious, or any other way of living.

                  2) Ah, to prognosticate. I don't think the current trends can be stopped, at least not by American citizens, and I don't think they have the will. The best they can do during this long, slow decline is to opt out of the fiat economy to the extent they are willing and able to do so. Even look at bitcoins and other options.

                  As time goes on I think more and more countries will opt out of the Fed. Reserves international monetary exchange and make their own multi-country agreements. The more that leave us the more broken we will become. I don't think anyone of the other countries believes that we will ever pay out debts to them or to the American people. We will become poorer and poorer, more and more taxed, our currency worth less and less, with ups and downs of course. During that process our U.S. long term interest rates will climb and climb and climb (it will start when the Feds stop pumping, which is why they are afraid to stop). When they become impossible either people will completely stop using the fiat economy or the Gov't will renounce the dollar currency and announce a new fiat currency or there will be a revolution (which in the end will accomplish only replacing one set of politicians with another). Another possibility would be secession by various states. This process seems slowly moving forward also, very slowly. Several states have laws permitting all debts to be paid in gold or silver, at the going dollar exchange rate, as well as in dollars. Several states have refused to implement selected Federal laws. Some states have laws in direct opposition to Fed. Laws. And on and on. We are slowly coming apart at the seams.
                  Last edited by Cryptocode; 09-20-2013, 08:23 PM.
                  "When the search for truth is confused with political advocacy, the pursuit of knowledge is reduced to the quest for power." - Alston Chase

                  Comment


                  • #99
                    @ Wilton

                    No. I am in favor of a complete re-assignment of the term "need"....and I am opposed the government having the power to TAKE from one to give to another, again with no regard to the fallacy of infinite growth. A socialist system is still essentially taking living stuff and turning it into dead stuff and calling that "growth". The fact that a system like this attempts to distribute it more evenly is still lipstick on a pig. That said, this is still 100% theoretical.

                    Socialism, communism, capitalism, all of these terms are dead to me as they are, as I have said before, invented ideological constructs meant to further empower the entrenched. They disagree over the means that the "pie" is distributed, but ALL believe that the pie MUST grow, forever. I think this is lunacy, and that future generations will look at us the way we look at ancient Rome; in short, "What the hell were they thinking?"

                    And I do not imply for this to mean America. It is malignant, and it is global. The entire definition of material worth will be our collective downfall. This is not opinion. It is math.

                    No one questions whether it is a smart decision to have burned about 90% of the planet's easily recoverable light sweet crude in about a 50 year span. No one questions whether eroding topsoil worldwide at 5x the speed it is replaced is a good idea. The same goes, across the board. It is never about the next generation or the 7th generation down the line. We are gluttons. One day it will catchup to us. We just might be lucky, or selfish enough, to be long dead by then.

                    If there is a wikipedia for that worldview, I really want to read about me
                    "The soul that does not attempt flight; does not notice its chains."

                    Comment


                    • I don't get everyone's belief that the economic apocalypse is imminent. The numbers used to "prove" this are misunderstood.

                      1. Debt: People have predicted more production commodities than has happened. Every country in the world has overpredicted to varying degrees because it's competitively advantageous. In other words, it's better to overpredict than underpredict.

                      2. Unemployment rate: America produces more intellectual property than anywhere else. More scientific research, patents, and finished products than any country that I am aware of. This is the most important piece to an economy in my opinion. What are you going to complain about? That we don't have as many janitors or store clerks as we used to? Automation will naturally bring a decrease in manual labor. One key point here though, and I have to credit a friend: A company which uses automation should still pay taxes on its robots/machines. This is the way to keep companies that reach mini-singularities from screwing the rest of the population just because they thought of it first.

                      3. The whole system works because of a social contract. Everyone agrees that dollars have value as a means of (in middle class lives) converting their own production for the production of others. People will sooner get what they can than give up on a system that inflates.

                      4. Inflation history: True, the dollar is a tiny fraction of what it was 50 years ago, but isn't work done 50 years ago worth a fraction of what it is today? Shouldn't people who inherit money have to pay the inflation from when their parents made it? To a certain extent, I think the duty of all the money is to all citizens. Absent inflation, you will find greater wealth disparity.

                      Furthermore, it's true that the dollar has inflated, and it's also true that the purchase power of said dollar has dropped. Goods cost more now even when accounting for inflation. *However*, try accounting for the time it takes to make that money. Jobs pay more now. You'll find that everyone can afford more things nowadays because this entire system was lifted by entrepreneurs.

                      5. Inflation potential: People fear runaway inflation. What would precipitate this? The government printing money to prevent defaults on loans. The difference between America and Greece is that our currency is the reserve currency of the world. Furthermore, that's not changing any time soon because our economy is still by far the biggest in the world, and the military is by far the most powerful. Plus, anything pre-1970s is inadequate for comparison of monetary systems. The world has never been run with a floating exchange rated fiat currency.

                      6. Government spending: People think the gov should cut back on spending. Why? All that money goes back into the American economy, so the fact that the gov takes it and makes it go through is just their way of making sure everyone spends money. I do agree that certain gov spending should be adjusted because some of their decision do not lead to flow back to the average citizen. This includes the stock and real estate market. We instead put some of that money into better roads, communications, power plants, and most importantly, research and development.

                      I would not worry at all about an impending economic collapse. I wouldn't even worry about a slow decline. We are going to continue to improve the quality of life in the world.

                      I think World War 3 is going to happen before an economic collapse, however even the chances of that are very slim. As the world becomes more and more interdependent, we will fight less war (but still skirmish) and compete more economically. And this sets the stage for a world unifcation, a la winning the game of Risk.

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by TheyCallMeLazarus View Post
                        @ Wilton

                        No. I am in favor of a complete re-assignment of the term "need"....and I am opposed the government having the power to TAKE from one to give to another, again with no regard to the fallacy of infinite growth. A socialist system is still essentially taking living stuff and turning it into dead stuff and calling that "growth". The fact that a system like this attempts to distribute it more evenly is still lipstick on a pig. That said, this is still 100% theoretical.

                        Socialism, communism, capitalism, all of these terms are dead to me as they are, as I have said before, invented ideological constructs meant to further empower the entrenched. They disagree over the means that the "pie" is distributed, but ALL believe that the pie MUST grow, forever. I think this is lunacy, and that future generations will look at us the way we look at ancient Rome; in short, "What the hell were they thinking?"

                        And I do not imply for this to mean America. It is malignant, and it is global. The entire definition of material worth will be our collective downfall. This is not opinion. It is math.

                        No one questions whether it is a smart decision to have burned about 90% of the planet's easily recoverable light sweet crude in about a 50 year span. No one questions whether eroding topsoil worldwide at 5x the speed it is replaced is a good idea. The same goes, across the board. It is never about the next generation or the 7th generation down the line. We are gluttons. One day it will catchup to us. We just might be lucky, or selfish enough, to be long dead by then.

                        If there is a wikipedia for that worldview, I really want to read about me
                        The pie analogy is really too simplistic.

                        I agree that our energy and food production must change in order to maintain what we have today. Plus, we should be more conscious about ecosystem disruption (via pollution and displacement), climate disruption, and maybe excessive population growth. Is there anything else you wanted to throw in there? I just want to make sure we're looking at all the issues.

                        I don't think the decision to avoid gas alternatives was quite as dumb as you think. There was simply no demand to change before. Even if there was, we weren't simply going to put our modern economies on hold as we researched energy alternatives. Now, there is a growing demand to change. This would be an ideal place to move government spending from a few less crucial pockets. You're setting a high standard for early 1900s America to have even considered this current future. I wouldn't call it totally unreasonable, but it is a bit optimistic.

                        As for food production, I just don't know enough right now. There is much research into alternative agriculture like aquaponics and hybrid plants/animals. We all agree here that hybrids were a bad road to go down, but there's still much time left to change our direction. There's still not an extreme demand in this sector because we have such a nice food surplus. Aside from investing in advanced technologies, we can also chip in with more good old-fashioned work. *As I understand it*, the most sustainable farming techniques require more manual labor and waiting time between crops (thus, less total production). If we farmed more land (due to a higher proportion of the work force contributing) but did it less-intensively, we might be able to save the top soil.

                        Ecosystem protection just needs to be better regulated. That's all.

                        I think climate disruption goes away once energy is created without petroleum. Problem solved.

                        Population growth does increase when food surplus and modern medical practices are present, but it also decreases when cities are present. In the long run, I foresee no population problems.

                        All of these problems are very solvable. I don't think they are permanent inherent flaws in the system.
                        Last edited by wiltondeportes; 09-20-2013, 10:18 PM.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Miguelinileugim View Post
                          Of course, but remember dunbar's number, over 150 people there's no empathy, free market is great for individuals who care only about themselves.
                          Dunbar's number is the number of stable social relationships a person can comfortably maintain. It has nothing to do with how many people you can feel empathy for. Most people have empathy for strangers. The people who don't, probably don't have empathy for anybody else either.

                          The free market is great for anyone who enjoys directing their own life, rather than having their destiny steered by somebody else.

                          If you can't trust one person or a small group of people to engage in financial transactions responsibly, then how can you trust one person or a small group of people to oversee and regulate every financial transaction made?

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by DamienMaddox View Post
                            Dunbar's number is the number of stable social relationships a person can comfortably maintain. It has nothing to do with how many people you can feel empathy for. Most people have empathy for strangers. The people who don't, probably don't have empathy for anybody else either.

                            The free market is great for anyone who enjoys directing their own life, rather than having their destiny steered by somebody else.

                            If you can't trust one person or a small group of people to engage in financial transactions responsibly, then how can you trust one person or a small group of people to oversee and regulate every financial transaction made?
                            The free market is great for getting abused by the rich and powerful... It's also great for entrepreneurs. There's a balance, which is what we have.

                            We don't trust just one person or a small group of people. There are far, far more checks and balances than you give the system credit for. This is also a main reason that hypothetical conspiraces are ridiculous where "powers that be" (like Rothschilds, bankers, Illuminati, whatever) pull all the strings of the world.
                            Last edited by wiltondeportes; 09-20-2013, 10:12 PM.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by DamienMaddox View Post
                              Dunbar's number is the number of stable social relationships a person can comfortably maintain. It has nothing to do with how many people you can feel empathy for. Most people have empathy for strangers. The people who don't, probably don't have empathy for anybody else either.

                              The free market is great for anyone who enjoys directing their own life, rather than having their destiny steered by somebody else.

                              If you can't trust one person or a small group of people to engage in financial transactions responsibly, then how can you trust one person or a small group of people to oversee and regulate every financial transaction made?
                              I have to trust less people in a capitalistic system with a small government, I have to trust a lot in a communistic/socialistic government with a huge government.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Miguelinileugim View Post
                                I have to trust less people in a capitalistic system with a small government, I have to trust a lot in a communistic/socialistic government with a huge government.
                                Imagined capitalistic, "free market" systems ignore the fact that regulations have always existed and always will.
                                Imagined communistic/socialistic governments ignore the fact that the more successful have always taken rewards/commodities from the less successful, and they always will.

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