Yes, the sugar-pushing friends and family suck, and so does the lack of resistance to it, but really we do have a lot to be thankful for as well. It feels kind of like we're getting into a "what is the meaning of life" discussion here. Let's be happy we're not in a war-torn country like Syria, for example. Such horror going on over there...Mexico, too. At least those are the ones in the news lately.
Run a bath with clean warm water, drop whatever essential oils you normally use, relax in there and close your eyes. Just focus on your breath. Calgon, take me away! ;)
[QUOTE=Rojo;1083839]Nobody looked at capitalism with a greater microscope than he did. You don't have to accept his conclusions to appreciate the vigor he put into studying it.[/QUOTE]
Really? As far as I can tell he has all the credibility on the subject of capitalism that Samuel Hahnemann has about pharmacology. Both came up with reasonable-seeming ideas, based entirely on theory, that are utterly wrong. Both went down their wrong path for the same reason...they failed to check their ideas against the real world. Both fail as soon as you test them in the real world. Both still have followers despite everything.
Karl's entire "study" of capitalism was a single attempt to start a newspaper, which it failed after one edition. He failed the practical. He was so business-illiterate that couldn't even hold a job that paid a living wage and was supported by Engels. His writings weren't based on study, they were based on isolated theorizing.
"It doesn't matter how beautiful your theory is, it doesn't matter how smart you are. If it doesn't agree with experiment, it's wrong."
--Richard P. Feynman
[QUOTE=JoanieL;1081801]I'm still paranoid and pissed at the Fed. ;)[/QUOTE]
As you should be..... pissed at the Fed (as in Federal Reserve) I mean.... the paranoid part... If you mean untrusting of government, yup, you should be paranoid........
[QUOTE=OutdoorAmy;1081853]LOL. I already had LPD (Libertarian Paranoia Disorder) BEFORE becoming paleo, learning what I've learned since has just cemented what I was already thinking. Though it's not the right wingers I'm afraid of nearly so much as the left wingers.
In any case, my philosophy is to live my life as best I can - try to help educate others - but not to live in constant fear of Big Brother. I'm too rebellious to cower anyway.[/QUOTE] A twin thumbs up!
I learned "Question Everything!" very early on. Arriving here is a reflection of that philosophy.
But the idea has taken hold that Capitalism is some sort of self-correcting machine, that any downside, like the housing bubble or Great Depression, MUST be the result of government meddling. This view is no accident, it's promotion is well-funded. And it's found it's most receptive audience among folks with a religious bent, who need infallible icons -- capitalism, Founding Fathers, Consitution. People who need stone tablets.
I'm 44 and grew up with history textbooks that still had a New Deal slant. I was actually taught, believe it or not, that America was great (history texts are always propoganda) because we weren't fully Communist or fully Capitalist, that we had a "mixed economy" and that was the way forward. This, of course, when away in the 80's.[/QUOTE]
You are 100% correct that our economy is not truly capitalism - that's why I cringe whenever people talk about the evils of Capitalism. Much of our economy is more of private sector/government partnership where the tax code, subsidies, rules/regulations, etc. are used to essentially pick winners and losers. With the not so invisible hand of government involved, we get problems such as asset bubbles.
A great example of government intervention gone awry is sugar subsidies and protectionism. This is tern artificially raises the price of sugar. In turn food processors turned to HFCS which is artificially cheap due to corn subsidies which in turn makes processed food artificially cheap. People buy more and it makes people overweight and have health problems. Now some other part of government decides America is too fat, needs food guidelines, needs cheaper healthcare, etc. to fix problems which you can argue were self created through government interventionism.
Its like one big game of whack a mole.
[QUOTE=bdlee73;1084521]With the not so invisible hand of government involved, we get problems such as asset bubbles. [/QUOTE]
We get bubbles without government as well. It's a hallmark of capitalism. I think you can argue that bubbles are worth the upside. Or that governments don't often help.
[QUOTE=Him;1084248]Karl's entire "study" of capitalism was a single attempt to start a newspaper, which it failed after one edition. He failed the practical. He was so business-illiterate that couldn't even hold a job that paid a living wage and was supported by Engels. His writings weren't based on study, they were based on isolated theorizing. [/QUOTE]
Ok, fine, then is Engels ok because he ran a factory?
[I]There is no place yet in America for a third party, I believe. The divergence of interests even in the same class group is so great in that tremendous area that wholly different groups and interests are represented in each of the two big parties, depending on the locality, and almost each particular section of the possessing class has its representatives in each of the two parties to a very large degree, though today big industry forms the core of the Republicans on the whole, just as the big landowners of the South form that of the Democrats. The apparent haphazardness of this jumbling together is what provides the splendid soil for the corruption and the plundering of the government that flourish there so beautifully. Only when the land — the public lands — is completely in the hands of the speculators, and settlement on the land thus becomes more and more difficult or falls prey to gouging — only then, I think, will the time come, with peaceful development, for a third party. Land is the basis of speculation, and the American speculative mania and speculative opportunity are the chief levers that hold the native-born worker in bondage to the bourgeoisie. [B]Only when there is a generation of native-born workers that cannot expect anything from speculation any more will we have a solid foothold in America[/B]. But, of course, who can count on peaceful development in America! There are economic jumps over there, like the political ones in France — to be sure, they produce the same momentary retrogressions.[/I]
The bolded = Occupy.
[QUOTE=Rojo;1084693]Ok, fine, then is Engels ok because he ran a factory?[/quote]
No. Engels didn't own a factory, he worked at daddy's factory. He was pissed at daddy but didn't have the stones to change how daddy did business, or challenge daddy directly. What he understood, if anything, was his daddy's way of doing business.
Beyond that you've got to specify which Capitalism we are talking about. There are many types that get muddled together when people talk capitalism today, and they behave in fundamentally different ways.
Primary capitalism is... ever look at the history of Motown? Berry Gordy? Berry's family had a fund... every family member contributed ten bucks a month and the family would make loans to support individual family member's entrepreneurial ventures. All the kids were entrepreneurs of one sort or another. Loans were decided by a vote of family members. Berry borrowed a thousand bucks or so from his own family and founded Motown, and from there built Motown into a business which he was directly involved in. In other words Berry borrowed from what most of us would say was "himself" (since he had contributed every month too), in order to enjoy direct returns in the form of revenue from the sale of his products (albums). Another example would be when most of us buy a car... we buy the car because we want to USE the car in order to increase our revenue (by allowing us to get to work/get to better jobs, et cetera). That's direct capitalism.
Derivative capitalism is the type that everyone in the USA is involved in at some level. Individuals, mutual funds, pension funds, and so on buy ownership stakes in companies, but they aren't investing in the means of production in order to benefit from the production itself. They are focused on a secondary property, a derived property, of capital--the perceived value of the enterprise. This disconnects capital from business fundamentals and treats companies like antiques or artwork...they are traded based on how much people want them rather than how much value they produce.
There are many others. They follow very different rules and have very different implications, but all are capitalism according to someone.
If you mix them up you end up with a very muddled picture of what capitalism is or how it behaves. You will also end up with some very wrong ideas about how to fix things you think are broken. That's a little hint about where Karl went wrong.
[quote]The bolded = Occupy.[/QUOTE]
LOL, no, bolded =/= Occupy. Occupy was at its high water mark maybe 40,000 people in the USA as far as credible news reports show. That's all of the protests, ever, assuming that nobody was traveling from protest to protest and therefore double counted...which we know some were. The "generation" from which Occupy primarily drew membership (age 19-29) contains about 40,000,000 people in the USA. So Occupy = 0.1% of that generation....and while they were protesting, far MORE were participating in the market.
[QUOTE=Him;1084971]No. Engels didn't own a factory, he worked at daddy's factory. He was pissed at daddy but didn't have the stones to change how daddy did business, or challenge daddy directly. What he understood, if anything, was his daddy's way of doing business. [/quote]
Why don't you save me some time and let me know the height of your ad hominem bar? Seems like if someone puts two dimes together, like Michael Moore, their attacked as rich hypocrits. If they're poor they're sour grapes.
[quote]Beyond that you've got to specify which Capitalism we are talking about. There are many types that get muddled together when people talk capitalism today, and they behave in fundamentally different ways.[/quote]
A lot folks smarter than me have debated how exactly to define Capitalism. I can envision a version that doesn't include compound interest or private land ownership.
[quote]LOL, no, bolded =/= Occupy. Occupy was at its high water mark maybe 40,000 people in the USA as far as credible news reports show. That's all of the protests, ever, assuming that nobody was traveling from protest to protest and therefore double counted...which we know some were. The "generation" from which Occupy primarily drew membership (age 19-29) contains about 40,000,000 people in the USA. So Occupy = 0.1% of that generation....and while they were protesting, far MORE were participating in the market.[/QUOTE]
I don't know the numbers but the amount of actual protestors in a movement is always going to be small. But Occupy spread spontaneously without an organization to over 600 communities in the US, thousands worldwide.