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Author Topic: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?  (Read 125012 times)

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #550 on: May 26, 2018, 06:48:19 AM »
Quote
That was THE point Bob.  :P

I got the point.  Apparently you didn't get mine.

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #551 on: May 26, 2018, 06:52:58 AM »
My problem is with restraining the free market in politicians.

In the context of the USA, judicial decisions culminating so far with Citizens United make that quite difficult. At present, both major parties fellate oligarchs, for that is the only way to retain power. Political contest is between those groups of oligarchs who ensure their pet politicians gain power. And they have enuf money to back both of the two parties.

Dubois (or was it Debs ?) pointed out a long time ago, well before Citizens United, that the two parties were just different wings of the same bird of prey.

Crowdfunding is one way around that. I am not optimistic considering that the oligarchs have more money than the plebes. But it sure spotlights the politicians enslaved to the oligarchs.

Or one could put one's faith in an oligarch funded party that proposes to change the Supremes so as to reverse Citizens United. That of course will take two presidential terms  at least and the Senate to confirm. Vote for us! For the next eight years! We promise we wont screw you, kick you out on the streets, bail out bankers, drone innocents or create slave markets no more.

Or one could go for a constitutional convention. Yeehaa! Except the oligarch funded party closer to controlling enuf states to demand a convention would enhance Citizens United in a heartbeat.

Or, like the last time, the voters could go with someone who promises to break things.

sidd

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #552 on: May 26, 2018, 06:59:02 AM »
"who in the discussion was recommending  an armed rebellion"

Nobody. Sedition was an accusation levelled at me, and i leave you to judge the evidence.

sidd

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #553 on: May 26, 2018, 07:12:57 AM »
Quote
In the context of the USA, judicial decisions culminating so far with Citizens United make that quite difficult. At present, both major parties fellate oligarchs, for that is the only way to retain power.

Yes, that is the largest problem we currently face in the US.  It's what is largely keeping other problems from being solved.

Quote
Or, like the last time, the voters could go with someone who promises to break things.

Or we could decide to not pay attention to TV ads, which is where most of the campaign money is spent, and elect someone who promises to fix what needs fixing.  I'd rather the good stuff wasn't broken.

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #554 on: May 26, 2018, 07:16:23 AM »
"who in the discussion was recommending  an armed rebellion"

Nobody. Sedition was an accusation levelled at me, and i leave you to judge the evidence.

sidd

Here's what you said -

Quote
This cannot be done within the capitalist framework, since capitalism always establishes a market in politicians. It must be done through political change.

If change cannot be made within a capitalist framework what option is there but to overthrow the capitalist framework?  What is there besides rebellion?

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #555 on: May 26, 2018, 08:24:23 AM »
"If change cannot be made within a capitalist framework what option is there but to overthrow the capitalist framework?  What is there besides rebellion? "

I replied to that earlier in this thread.

https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1102.msg155949.html#msg155949

sidd

Sleepy

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #556 on: May 26, 2018, 08:28:57 AM »

Instead unclear numbers without a findable source (I never found any post from May 23, 2018, 11:11:22 ) you could look at papers like this one (attached above first image below). They usually try to give references and clear sources for readers to look up on, if they wish to do so.



I always try to provide links to support any data that I reference. One reason I do this is the article or paper goes into far more detail than I can do in a comment and I want to provide the people reading my comment an opportunity to dig into a topic they find interesting.

This fracking hydraulic fluid article which I linked to earlier is one such resource, very detailed and informative. If you want to know why you should be frightened by the boom in fracking in the U.S., this is a must read. I must warn you in advance, it is 168 pages long.

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-03/documents/fracfocus_analysis_report_and_appendices_final_032015_508_0.pdf

Please be clear. This boom in fracking is not because people are evil. It is because fracking natural gas is highly profitable and, as long as it remains so, fracking will continue to grow. This is why the efficient operations of the market (modern capitalism always seeks to maximize profit) will never get us where we need to go and, if it does, it will be far too late to save us.

The solution to this existential crisis lies outside of capitalism and any effort to implement the solution will always meet resistance from businesses and individuals. This is why I am pessimistic about our future. The science of AGW is sound. The technology needed to solve the problem is available. The will to embrace the social change needed is lacking. We will need to be staring death in the face before we react and it will be too late.
I know and absolutely agree SH, it's fairly easy to notice those who are always ready to provide the basis for their comments in here and those who are ignoring comments that do include external facts.

Providing links is even more helpful for all of us non native English speakers.

Thanks for the link.
Omnia mirari, etiam tritissima.
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Science is a jealous mistress and takes little account of a man's feelings.

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #557 on: May 26, 2018, 08:37:44 AM »
In the context  of late stage capitalism, i am watching  Italy closely. There is a  very interesting alliance there between the left and the right, mainly i think a deal to keep berlosconi out of power, but very interesting nonetheless. Italy is too big to be slapped down like greece, but some of the things the coalition is proposing will not go down well with the german banks.

We shall see if they cave like Syriza in greece.

sidd

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #558 on: May 26, 2018, 08:56:23 AM »
I asked -

Quote
If change cannot be made within a capitalist framework what option is there but to overthrow the capitalist framework?  What is there besides rebellion?

The answer I get is (in huge letters which I suppose indicates higher thinking)

Political Change.

Political change, which I learn from the link is:

Quote
Political change is a normal function of internal and external politics. Rulers will be voted out, retire, or die while in power, and the new leader will make changes.

Now we've already been told that change cannot be made within a capitalistic framework so we can't vote out the old leaders and vote in new leaders who will make changes so we've got to move on to the other methods of Political Change.

Our options are, according to the link,
Quote
through irregular events, such as a coup d'etat or a rebellion
.

I.e., rebellion.




sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #559 on: May 26, 2018, 09:07:47 AM »
Other options for political change:

1) About half the revenue for the federal government comes from income tax. So the poor could quit paying. Unfortunately, thats  a fleabite coz they dont pay much, the fed reserve would write a check and it it would be lost in the noise. When the rich have a tax revolt, they notice.

2)Civil disobedience. Mebbe, but  right now the seriously disgruntled are killing themselves. Dont see anyone out on the streels yet. Well, except the homeless and the panhandlers.

3)General strike. Wobbly city. People dont like starving, and most are a paycheck away from disaster. And little sense of community to bail em out, make sure they're still eating, except in the boonies.

4)external factors:  china could sell a trillion worth of US bonds, and more important all the fannie,freddie and ginnie debt they hold and spike interest rates foraminnit until the FRB wrote some more big checks.

(For the record, i don't think they will, but they have already stated they wont accumulate any more. They dont need to. But the US needs to keep selling and foreign buyers were about a third of the market )

Or Japan. Or the EU. Quitting buying US debt would signal loss of confidence or equivalently higher risk rating to US gov secured debt than quoted rates. The usual response to that in our brave, new, capitalist world would be a black market in trading US debt below the face value, sorta like currency exchange in banana republics, where you get very different values on the street than in the official markets. That would lead to political change real quick, probably in the wrong direction.

We live in interesting times

sidd

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #560 on: May 26, 2018, 09:17:49 AM »
Quote
Instead unclear numbers without a findable source (I never found any post from May 23, 2018, 11:11:22 )

Ah, I now see your problem.  You did not read the May 23, 2018, 11:11:22 post which was written by ASILurker.  In it he/she copies down my comment of   same day 10:47:38.  The one in which I state that my data source was the EIA.

Do you need a lesson in what TWh, percent and annual increase in percent mean?  I assume you understand or were able to look up fossil fuel, nuclear, renewables, and total.  And US = United States.

be cause

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #561 on: May 26, 2018, 09:25:42 AM »
I wish you would all go and piss in another pot .. b.c.
2007 + 5 = 2012 + 4 = 2016 + 3 = 2019 + 2 = 2021 
 (phew)

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #562 on: May 26, 2018, 09:30:33 AM »
I asked -

OK I get it. You're not a supporter of the American Revolution of 1776. You prefer allowing capitalism and market forces to generate positive change and solve huge social and global problems. I get that. Many adhere to the New Age Neoliberal Ideology and Libertarian Philosophy so you're not alone there. The Market Knows All religion of the 21st century. Might work.

No, I am a supporter of doing things that work.  You have told us that the US needs to make some changes.  I agree with that.  Early in my life I realized that the US was not perfect and throughout my life I've seen things that need changing.  I've also seen a lot of changes, not all good.  Not all bad.

What I am getting from you is that the US needs to change but cannot change via the ballot box because of capitalistic something.

What I haven't gotten is a way to change other than rebellion.  It's kind of the sort of ideas we get from Republicans:

1) Kill Obamacare
2) (something happens)
3) Everyone has affordable health care.

or

1) Do away with Social Security
2) (something happens)
3) Elders do not have to stand on the sidewalk begging for food.

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #563 on: May 26, 2018, 10:05:34 AM »
Clearly you don't understand me.  Or you're trolling.

Quote
OK I get it. You're not a supporter of the American Revolution of 1776. You prefer allowing capitalism and market forces to generate positive change and solve huge social and global problems. I get that. Many adhere to the New Age Neoliberal Ideology and Libertarian Philosophy so you're not alone there. The Market Knows All religion of the 21st century. Might work.

I've said nothing pro or con about the American revolution of 1776.  You have zero basis for stating my opinion.

I've said nothing about preferring to let capitalism solve problems.  What I've said is that there is not sufficient public pressure to solve climate change at this time.  But market forces are starting to move us off fossil fuels. 

I'm not really sure what "New Age Neoliberal Ideology" is.  Here's what Wiki says neoliberalism is. 

Quote
Neoliberalism or neo-liberalism[1] refers primarily to the 20th-century resurgence of 19th-century ideas associated with laissez-faire economic liberalism.[2]:7 Those ideas include economic liberalization policies such as privatization, austerity, deregulation, free trade[3] and reductions in government spending in order to increase the role of the private sector in the economy and society

That's not me.  And I never liked new age music either.  It's even worse than disco.

Libertarian Philosophy?  I remember reading a couple of Ayn Rand's books 'way back when' and thinking them some of the stupidest stuff I'd ever read. 

So you seem to have one thing right.  You have no clue where I'm coming from. 

Or you're trolling.

Sleepy

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #564 on: May 26, 2018, 12:35:52 PM »
Quote
Instead unclear numbers without a findable source (I never found any post from May 23, 2018, 11:11:22 )

Ah, I now see your problem.  You did not read the May 23, 2018, 11:11:22 post which was written by ASILurker.  In it he/she copies down my comment of   same day 10:47:38.  The one in which I state that my data source was the EIA.

Do you need a lesson in what TWh, percent and annual increase in percent mean?  I assume you understand or were able to look up fossil fuel, nuclear, renewables, and total.  And US = United States.

You just proved that you don't understand time, or reply to comments you don't like, or read them, or watch videos presented to you. You just talk a lot.

In this case you are also clearly trolling, since you had to make it clear to Terry in one of your following comments that the numbers were for the US only:
FF use in TWh peaked in 2007.  Starting with 2007 here's how it's run through 2017.

2,992,238
2,926,731
2,726,452
2,883,361
2,788,867
2,782,023
2,738,797
2,738,114
2,732,531
2,649,968
2,520,515
Thanks Bob.
Glad to see that the world's reliance on ff is headed in the right direction.
Still waiting for confirmation from Mauna Loa. ;)
Terry

Those are US numbers, not global Terry.

Learn how to quote and attach links properly instead of writing more nonsense.
Especially if people ask for them. This is not the first time you ignore requests (or comments) either.

Edit; forgot, link to the comment you refer to above. It's easy.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2018, 12:44:51 PM by Sleepy »
Omnia mirari, etiam tritissima.
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Science is a jealous mistress and takes little account of a man's feelings.

wili

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #565 on: May 26, 2018, 04:03:18 PM »
Since someone mentioned Ayn Rand, I thought I'd post this, perhaps to lighten the mood?

“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs."  :)

https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/ayn-rand
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #566 on: May 26, 2018, 07:40:03 PM »
Sometimes I am joking. Or at least being light hearted. Sometimes I can't help myself and do what others are doing. But that usually goes over everyone's heads because they miss it. But if I said what I was doing it (or held up a  sign) it would not be as funny or poignant a reflection. Either way I damned if I do and damned if it don't. Welcome to the world of internet discussions.   :)

Trolling I am not.

If people don't get your humor/snarking/whatever then you aren't very good at it.

If that's the case then all  you do is spook the herd.

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #567 on: May 26, 2018, 07:47:52 PM »
Quote
You just proved that you don't understand time, or reply to comments you don't like, or read them, or watch videos presented to you. You just talk a lot.

Sleepy, you took a single comment out of a conversation and upset yourself.  Chill.

The date/time I gave was adequate to discover the source of my data - the EIA.  Clearly stated in the chart.  If you wanted the exact page all you had to do is ask.  Those of us who spend time on energy issues know where that data is.

I clearly respond to comments I don't like.  I'm responding to this one of yours.


As for watching videos, going to other sites to read something that someone thinks ought to be read - generally I'm not going to do it.  I'm not going to spend a lot of time on an expedition trying to discover someone's point.

If there's an thought you think important then spell it out.  Provide a link as backup and/or to give those interested access to more detail. 


zizek

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #568 on: May 26, 2018, 10:54:17 PM »
Bob, I don't think you've actually spent any time reading about capitalism and its criticisms. This is pretty obvious when you discuss leftism in American electoral politics. It's a mistake you and other "out-of-touch" arm-chair debaters make: confusing social democrats with socialism.
You often parrot worn-out right-wing talking points when criticizing socialism. Grade-school "communism works great in theory, but not in practice" level of analysis.  Every thing you post lacks any substance at all.  It's sad

Every time we criticize capitalism, not matter what it is, your response is a vomit of very specific cherry-picked data supporting uninspiring conclusions.
This recent argument started when I pointed how all battery technology is controlled by a small group of powerful people. I was pointing out the complete absurdity that capitalism has forced us to entrust the future of humanity on a handful of faceless executives.
You responded by..... no bullshit...... Posting data showing reduction of fossil fuel usage in the united states. 


In fact, I don't think you've actually cited any meaningful analysis of capitalism's ability to respond to climate change.  You just keep on saying.... it'll work... it'll work... it'll work. it'll work.... it'll work...

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #569 on: May 26, 2018, 11:09:55 PM »
zizek - That's your opinion. 

I do not value it.  It's wrong.

zizek

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #570 on: May 27, 2018, 03:10:54 AM »
I'm curious how far Bob is willing to defend capitalism as liberal democracies continue to deteriorate.

What's happening now?



"Hate groups in the U.S. remain on the rise, according to new study"
https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/hate-groups-in-the-us-remain-on-the-rise-according-to-new-study/2018/02/21/6d28cbe0-1695-11e8-8b08-027a6ccb38eb_story.html?utm_term=.f6c2597a688e

-------------

Diversionary Nationalism: Economic Inequality and the Formation of National Pride

The gap keeps growing:


-------------------

The rise of nationalism is due to the natural course of capitalism: the accumulation of wealth among powerful people has lead to immense inequality.

Now consider what is going to happen as wealthy nations are put under extreme pressures due to climate change:
http://www.businessinsider.com/300-million-climate-refugees-by-2050-2017-12

What will capital's response be to the millions upon million knocking at their door? Are they going to relinquish control of their wealth so they can provide food and shelter them? After seeing Syria, we're pretty fucking reluctant even when times are good

zizek

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #571 on: May 27, 2018, 03:12:29 AM »
Fascism is nice, because it’s just the reactionary arm of capitalism. No need for revolution. It’s a smooth transition. We don’t need to overthrow the bourgeoise or anything like that. We just have to turn up the status quo:  Continue arming the already existing hate groups, bomb more countries. Nothing new. We’re pretty good at it.

And what’s the liberal’s response to fascism? Well, it doesn’t look good.


https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/05/23/opinion/international-world/centrists-democracy.html


And how have liberals responded to fascism in past?


Because of these and similar stories, the impression remains that nearly all German Democrats fled their country or retreated to their homes at the first glimpse of jackboots. Yet foreign exile and “inner emigration” were not the only choices facing liberals in the Third Reich. In contrast to their Communist and Socialist counterparts, most Democrats escaped arrest and persecution. Some even thrived under National Socialism. Although deprived of political office, the future President of the Federal Republic, Theodor Heuss, and Germany’s leading feminist, Gertrud Baumer, continued to edit prominent journals and to publish numerous books and articles. Several Weimar Democrats, like Hitler’s Economics Minister Hjalmar Schacht, Joseph Goebbels’s press attache Werner Stephan, and Rudolf Diels, Reinhard Heydrich’s predecessor as Chief of the Gestapo, experienced a career renaissance under Hitler.4

LIVING WITH HITLER LIBERAL DEMOCRATS IN THE THIRD REICH
ERIC KURLANDER

----------------


I don’t really disagree with much you say bob. I do think that the markets will be able to solve the energy crisis.  But… the solution will be exclusive to the white capitalist. That’s you Bob. 

zizek

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #572 on: May 27, 2018, 04:05:36 AM »
hahaha

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #573 on: May 27, 2018, 04:21:13 AM »
zizek - I've got one last message for you.  I'm no longer going to reply to your posts.  I simply have no interest in wasting time on you.

ASL - you picked out a single instance where you felt a link was not supplied when, in fact, the source was given.  If you wanted the specific page you could have asked.  You've now ridden that poor pony into the ground.  It's time to let it go. 

I'm more than willing to carry on conversations with reasonable people but not a-holes.

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #574 on: May 27, 2018, 05:43:32 AM »
I generally give links.  If I miss and you want one just ask.

I am not going to go up through the comments to see if your report is correct or not.  I'm done with this foolishness.


Sleepy

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #575 on: May 27, 2018, 06:38:08 AM »
Quote
You just proved that you don't understand time, or reply to comments you don't like, or read them, or watch videos presented to you. You just talk a lot.

Sleepy, you took a single comment out of a conversation and upset yourself.  Chill.

Nope, I'm not upset, it takes a lot more than that. I just thought this language that I recently used would be the only thing that would make you respond. I was correct and it wasn't one single comment, it was three years worth of it, about the same thing. That plate on the wall that disgusted you, remember???

Quote
The date/time I gave was adequate to discover the source of my data - the EIA.  Clearly stated in the chart.  If you wanted the exact page all you had to do is ask.  Those of us who spend time on energy issues know where that data is.

I know where to find data, the issue here is that you should provide links to it, especially upon request or when people clearly misunderstand you. You still haven't provided a link to that post of yours because there is no link with that timestamp.

Quote
I clearly respond to comments I don't like.  I'm responding to this one of yours.
See answer above, it's three years worth of it...

Quote
As for watching videos, going to other sites to read something that someone thinks ought to be read - generally I'm not going to do it.  I'm not going to spend a lot of time on an expedition trying to discover someone's point.

Thank you. Feel free to ignore science based opinions, there's a lot of people that do so. That is also the real reason why we collectively has been so unsuccessful combating climate change. The only pain here is that this place honours itself as a science based forum.
Also see my previous comment on this to SH:
https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1102.msg155964.html#msg155964

Quote
If there's an thought you think important then spell it out.  Provide a link as backup and/or to give those interested access to more detail.
Agree but that is merely you trolling again. You don't even follow your own words here.
Please understand Bob, this is only the second time in my entire life that I've accused someone of trolling. I never do that on a whim. The first time it took me two years. I'm done now.

Still not upset, just spelling it out and trying to be as clear as possible.
Omnia mirari, etiam tritissima.
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Science is a jealous mistress and takes little account of a man's feelings.

Shared Humanity

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #576 on: May 27, 2018, 03:00:30 PM »
With regards to my using the term Capitalism to describe the growth system in which humanity has organized civilization. I grew up in the U.S. and Capitalism is what we call it, a stunning achievement for humans. As the vanguard for the crowning glory of mankind, Americans feel compelled to export this wonderful system to peoples across the planet and if ya'll don't like it, you can stuff it.  ::)

Since the term is causing confusion and as a member of the most exceptional country on the planet (America), I will give everyone permission to use Industrial Age.

Long live Ayn Rand! MAGA!  :o
« Last Edit: May 27, 2018, 03:14:24 PM by Shared Humanity »

Shared Humanity

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #577 on: May 27, 2018, 03:04:53 PM »
Oh! And ya'll gotta lighten up. Everyone seems to be a little too self important right now and it's causing some dissension.

Besides, only my opinion counts.  ;)

Susan Anderson

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #578 on: May 27, 2018, 04:33:54 PM »
Oh! And ya'll gotta lighten up. Everyone seems to be a little too self important right now and it's causing some dissension.

Besides, only my opinion counts.  ;)

Nice irony. Moving on ...

The "capitalism" we operate under now is state-supported. I'd suggest checking out Dark Money or other Jane Mayer writings (search https://www.google.com/search?q=jane+mayer+koch; The New Yorker, her home base, provides a few free reads per month and others have published her as well). Support for income inequality, deregulation of toxic waste and worker safety, the list goes on and on. Michael Moore's Stupid White Men (European edition published right around 9/11) covers the export.

As we know from the Russian experiment, power elites will take advantage of any system and corrupt it for their own advantage. That's human, unfortunately, the weak and powerless giving up what little leverage they have in favor of the strong and powerful.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2018, 10:00:23 PM by Susan Anderson »

Bob Wallace

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #579 on: May 27, 2018, 05:43:49 PM »
Seems like some equate capitalism and greed.

Greed can exist within any economic system.

zizek

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #580 on: May 27, 2018, 06:52:04 PM »
weird how people equate capitalism with greed. seems so strange. it's not like capitalism is an economic system based on individual profits & private property. so weird. can't believe anybody could come to that conclusion.

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #581 on: May 27, 2018, 07:48:54 PM »
Prof. Kelton and the modern monrtary theorists have some ideas:

"the job guarantee ― a federal program offering a decent job to every American who wants to work"

"governments aren’t directly constrained by how much programs cost. The serious concern is inflation, and a job guarantee would revolutionize the way the United States manages the value of the dollar, forcing the Federal Reserve to stop creating unemployment when it wants to keep prices down.  "

"It is instead a story about power and political legitimacy, about the way public officials use economists to block or advance social change and about how economists build credibility by circulating through the cocktail parties, expense-account dinners and conference rooms of high finance. "

"Money is a tool governments use to manage these variables and solve social problems. "

"In Washington, by contrast, being right rarely matters. Politicians don’t generally turn to economists for new insight into how the world works. Economists instead serve as a kind of credibility shield ― experts who can be trotted out to assure the public that there are very complex and sophisticated reasons political leaders should be doing the things they do. A big part of any Washington economics job is providing a sense of scientific certainty to political judgments that are, by their very nature, uncertain ... The job, in other words, is to back up your team. Getting a policy decision wrong isn’t such a big deal, as long as everyone else on the team blows the same call. "

"politically relevant economists fetishize orthodoxy. Nobody with political experience really welcomes a new idea that explains why previous economic policies were wrong."

"Kelton maintains that government doesn’t actually finance its activity by levying taxes or issuing bonds. Instead, it creates money by spending it into existence. "

"But even inflation doesn’t impose a hard limit on policy options. The Federal Reserve can raise interest rates to deal with it, Congress can raise taxes to pull money out of circulation or even impose price controls."

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/stephanie-kelton-economy-washington_us_5afee5eae4b0463cdba15121

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #582 on: May 28, 2018, 01:43:15 AM »
I wish you would all go and piss in another pot .. b.c.
I am impressed at the rapid fulfillment of my wishes and now wish you all well ! :)  b.c.
2007 + 5 = 2012 + 4 = 2016 + 3 = 2019 + 2 = 2021 
 (phew)

SteveMDFP

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #583 on: May 28, 2018, 02:29:57 AM »

 As the vanguard for the crowning glory of mankind, Americans feel compelled to export this wonderful system to peoples across the planet and if ya'll don't like it, you can stuff it.  ::)

Well, let's give credit where credit is due.  Capitalism would still be puny and insignificant if it weren't for the invention of the Corporation.  The Dutch have that credit, I believe.

Thanks, Dutchmen!

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #584 on: May 28, 2018, 06:21:33 AM »

 As the vanguard for the crowning glory of mankind, Americans feel compelled to export this wonderful system to peoples across the planet and if ya'll don't like it, you can stuff it.  ::)

Well, let's give credit where credit is due.  Capitalism would still be puny and insignificant if it weren't for the invention of the Corporation.  The Dutch have that credit, I believe.

Thanks, Dutchmen!
Portugal traded with India for much of the 16th century, before the Dutch and British EIC's were founded. Vasco da Gama reached India six years after Columbus made landfall in Puerto Rico in 1492.

Europe is roughly a century ahead of the US. ;)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timeline_of_United_States_history
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sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #585 on: May 28, 2018, 08:59:36 AM »
Vasco de Gama ? this guy ? early emissary of the rape to come:

 " We took a Mecca ship on board of which were 380 men and many women and children, and we took from it fully 12,000 ducats, with goods worth at least another 10,000. And we burned the ship and all the people on board with gunpowder, on the first day of October."

https://historicalleys.blogspot.com/2011/04/plunder-and-massacre-of-meri.html

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #586 on: May 28, 2018, 09:12:31 AM »
Vasco de Gama ? this guy ? early emissary of the rape to come:
Yep.
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Neven

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #587 on: May 28, 2018, 03:28:39 PM »
Well, let's give credit where credit is due.  Capitalism would still be puny and insignificant if it weren't for the invention of the Corporation.  The Dutch have that credit, I believe.

Thanks, Dutchmen!

You're welcome. We've also invented slavery, introduced guns to African tribes and helped sugar become the invisible master of western culture.
Il faut comparer, comparer, comparer, et cultiver notre jardin

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #588 on: May 28, 2018, 03:40:34 PM »
Like the late stage industrial economy, this thread appears to be wandering in the desert.

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #589 on: May 29, 2018, 06:51:00 AM »
Well, let's give credit where credit is due.  Capitalism would still be puny and insignificant if it weren't for the invention of the Corporation.  The Dutch have that credit, I believe.

Thanks, Dutchmen!

You're welcome. We've also invented slavery, introduced guns to African tribes and helped sugar become the invisible master of western culture.

Speaking of sugar (mentioned this before in here but failed to find this article yesterday). Sweden is only self-sufficient on flour, carrots and sugar.
https://www.dn.se/ekonomi/lrf-sveriges-matforsorjning-tar-snabbt-slut-vid-en-kris/
Quote
The state contingency stocks have also disappeared. At the beginning of the 1990s there were about 200 such spread across the country, but since the entry into the EU, the stocks are gone. According to a report by the Civil Defense Association, today's central warehouse for food - basically it's the food in our stores - would be emptied after about ten days.

Quote
In the 1980s Sweden was self-sufficient for all foods except for such products as coffee and bananas. Today, Swedish agriculture accounts for about half of the food we eat.

More than 40 percent of the cheese, just over 50 percent of the beef and a small portion of the vegetables and fruit are Swedish-produced, according to Statistics Sweden, SCB.

The ultimate responsibility for providing food security at local level, in extraordinary events in peacetime and heightened preparedness, lies in the municipalities.
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SteveMDFP

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #590 on: May 29, 2018, 07:29:51 AM »

Speaking of sugar (mentioned this before in here but failed to find this article yesterday). Sweden is only self-sufficient on flour, carrots and sugar.

Well, there's always carrot cake to subsist on when everything goes belly-up.

Susan Anderson

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #591 on: May 29, 2018, 04:52:10 PM »
I try to read Monbiot right through and am catching up on his article about Natural Capital. Absent a magic wand, I can only do my best to support those public servants who try to reverse this dangerous idiocy. https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/may/15/price-natural-world-destruction-natural-capital or (same thing) http://www.monbiot.com/2018/05/18/price-less/

Quote
The government argues that without a price, the living world is accorded no value, so irrational decisions are made. By costing nature, you ensure that it commands the investment and protection that other forms of capital attract. This thinking is based on a series of extraordinary misconceptions. Even the name reveals a confusion: natural capital is a contradiction in terms. Capital is properly understood as the human-made segment of wealth that is deployed in production to create further financial returns. Concepts such as natural capital, human capital or social capital can be used as metaphors or analogies, though even these are misleading. But the 25-year plan defines natural capital as “the air, water, soil and ecosystems that support all forms of life”. In other words, nature is capital. In reality, natural wealth and human-made capital are neither comparable nor interchangeable. If the soil is washed off the land, we cannot grow crops on a bed of derivatives.

A similar fallacy applies to price. Unless something is redeemable for money, a pound or dollar sign placed in front of it is senseless: price represents an expectation of payment, in accordance with market rates. In pricing a river, a landscape or an ecosystem, either you are lining it up for sale, in which case the exercise is sinister, or you are not, in which case it is meaningless.

Still more deluded is the expectation that we can defend the living world through the mindset that’s destroying it. The notions that nature exists to serve us; that its value consists of the instrumental benefits we can extract; that this value can be measured in cash terms; and that what can’t be measured does not matter, have proved lethal to the rest of life on Earth. The way we name things and think about them – in other words the mental frames we use – helps determine the way we treat them.

.... the key to political success is to promote your own values, rather than appease the mindset you contest.The natural capital agenda reinforces the notion that nature has no value unless you can extract cash from it ... market values crowd out non-market values. Markets change the meaning of the things we discuss, replacing moral obligations with commercial relationships. This corrupts and degrades our intrinsic values and empties public life of moral argument.
....
The natural capital agenda is the definitive expression of our disengagement from the living world. First we lose our wildlife and natural wonders. Then we lose our connections with what remains of life on Earth. Then we lose the words that described what we once knew. Then we call it capital and give it a price. This approach is morally wrong, intellectually vacuous, emotionally alienating and self-defeating.
--
personal note: I have a limited appetite for these discussions and the flying darts often directed at good people doing their practical best to promote healing action within the context of day to day living. "Here we all are, and what are we going to do about it" is my plea. I will not hover over this board or read every dart that is sent my way; the intensity of the effort to discredit what I regard as reality and condemn anything and everything that comes from pragmatists (often veering towards believing anyone who supports bias, and particularly directed at people who have money, as if money itself is a badge of filth) does not interest me.

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #592 on: May 29, 2018, 06:35:27 PM »
Free market in accountants:

"If the supposed watchdogs overlook new threats, the fallout could be as cataclysmic as the last financial crisis threatened to be. Bean counting is too important to be left to today’s bean counters."

He doesnt even mention PwC scandal in ukraine or KPMG/Deloitte/EY in Malaysia's 1MDB. or the role of the bond pricers Moodys, Fitch and SP in the USA. Or the fixed LIBOR/forex markets. Or ...

All of them are thieves and liars, they'll make up any numbers they're paid to. They all deserve the fate of Arthur Andersen.

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/may/29/the-financial-scandal-no-one-is-talking-about-big-four-accountancy-firms?

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #593 on: May 30, 2018, 06:04:02 AM »
In the context of Italy, Varoufakis has a warning as one who has been up close and personal with banker hegemon:

"Had Mattarella refused Salvini the post of interior minister, outraged by his promise to expel 500,000 migrants from Italy, I would be compelled to support him. But, no, the president had no such qualms. "

"Mattarella chose to clash with an absolute majority of lawmakers for another reason: his disapproval of the finance minister designate. Why? Because the said gentleman, while fully qualified for the job, and despite his declaration that he would abide by the EU’s rules, had in the past expressed doubts about the eurozone’s architecture and has favoured a plan of EU exit just in case it was needed. "

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/may/28/italy-eurosceptic-far-right-technocrat-matarella-racist-populist

Varoufakis sees the truth and dares speak it.

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Susan Anderson

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #594 on: May 30, 2018, 08:22:29 PM »
Really good overview, heavy reading but the history of how and why we got here, while depressing, appears to be excellent.

Is Capitalism a Threat to Democracy?
The idea that authoritarianism attracts workers harmed by the free market, which emerged when the Nazis were in power, has been making a comeback.


https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2018/05/14/is-capitalism-a-threat-to-democracy

One takeaway: it's not that simple

Second takeaway: economics is not science, and formulas based on "economics" are dangerous

Personal takeaway: we're fucked!

sidd

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #595 on: May 31, 2018, 08:08:22 AM »
Ooo, look! Freeeeee market in fed reserve:

" ... three members of the Fed board voted unanimously to advance a proposal to loosen and tailor the so-called Volcker Rule ..."

" ...  meant to curb the kinds of risky, complex investments that helped trigger the 2007-2008 financial crisis. "

" ... new rule would no longer order banks to prove that their efforts to create markets for clients’ speculative trades and underwrite stock offerings comply with regulation if the firms adhere to certain risk mitigation requirements "

That's funny.

" ... reduce the amount of trading information banks are mandated to report ... "

" ... a new accounting standard ..."

This last sentence would be funny if it weren't so sad:

"Volcker, the former Fed chair,  said he “welcomed” the efforts “to simplify compliance” with his namesake rule and trusted that the rewrite would preserve its intent."

http://thehill.com/policy/finance/389942-fed-advances-proposal-to-loosen-volcker-rule

sidd


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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #596 on: May 31, 2018, 10:11:58 PM »
Sacrifice zone of late stage capitalism: Plunder of Greece to bail out German bankers continues

"Since its debt crisis began in 2009, Greece has received €260 billion in loans in exchange for the implementation of the austerity measures, including public-sector layoffs, tax hikes and pension cuts. This has not reduced the country’s mountain of debt by a single euro. Virtually every cent has been handed back to the banks to meet interest payments. The EU and IMF are demanding that Greece pay £57 billion in loan obligations and interest over the next four years."

"Syriza cannot enact any legislation without the say so of the “troika.” "

"In 2012, the minimum take-home pay of a full-time private-sector worker was US$848 a month. This was slashed to US$690 a month in February of that year. Many workers are earning much less, as the figures mask the fact that half of all new jobs are part-time or seasonal. After three years of Syriza in power, Labour Ministry figures reveal that the poorest one-third of private-sector workers now received a starvation wage of just US$445 a month."

" unemployment still over 20 percent and at 45 percent for young people"

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/05/31/gree-m31.html

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #597 on: June 04, 2018, 01:16:56 PM »
More on Anthropologist David Graeber’s new book:

You’re Not Just Imagining It. Your Job Is Absolute BS
Anthropologist David Graeber’s new book accuses the global economy of churning out meaningless jobs that are killing the human spirit
Quote
“Huge swathes of people spend their days performing jobs they secretly believe do not really need to be performed,” Graeber writes. The rise of automation has meant that fewer humans are needed in manufacturing and farming, but instead of this freeing up our time, we’ve seen those jobs replaced by “the ballooning of … the administrative sector up to and including the creation of whole new industries like financial services or telemarketing, or the unprecedented expansion of sectors like corporate law, academic and health administration, human resources and public relations.”

Very loosely, a bulls--- job, by Graeber’s definition, is one that could be erased from the Earth and no one would be worse off. It’s also phenomenological. If you feel your job is bulls---, it probably is.
...
Meanwhile, says Graeber, practitioners in the fields that directly benefit mankind or offer personal fulfillment, such as teaching, caregiving, waiting, writing, performing carpentry, or making art,  are (with the exception of some doctors) poorly paid and secretly resented by those forced to waste their time pursuing a paycheck. Being occupied for long hours of the day fulfilling tasks that, at best, are useless and, at worst, hurt others—building the aforementioned phone systems, foisting software on budget-starved elementary schools, creating paperwork morasses for the homeless—is “a profound psychological violence” that causes anxiety and depression. Basically, our collective soul is being crushed by a rise in what Graeber sees as make-work.
...
Graeber argues that the concept of selling off one’s time in increments is relatively new. Historically, he says, the idea “that one person’s time can belong to someone else is actually quite peculiar.” To the ancient Greeks, he claims, you were either a slave and your whole life was owned, or you sold a good (an eating utensil, food) that you created as you saw fit. He implicates the shift toward clock time in the Middle Ages as the culprit behind our collective acceptance of wage slavery. Whereas time was traditionally amorphous, determined by geographical distances or chemical transformations (as long as it takes for the bread to rise, the wheat to dry) clock towers and then pocket watches (disallowed in factories so bosses could cheat by meddling with the hour hands on clocks), turned time into discreet, barter-able chunks. Naturally, we’re built to work in bursts and then to celebrate and rest, just as Mother Nature ordained, not pace ourselves to produce at an even tempo for hours at a stretch, day after day, all week.
...
Graeber is also an activist, so he must be given some credit for not just honking off in an annoyingly self-satisfied tone; although he claims he’s not interested in suggesting policy (he is, after all, an anarchist), he does endorse Universal Basic Income as one solution.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-15/bullshit-jobs-by-david-graeber-review
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #598 on: June 04, 2018, 03:14:27 PM »
Crossposting this here as well.
Renewables 2018 Global Status Report
http://www.ren21.net/status-of-renewables/global-status-report/

https://twitter.com/Oliver_Geden/status/1003565372258377728
Quote
Result is obvious but not known by most policymakers, journalists & public: #Renewables volume has drastically increased, but share in overall energy consumption hasn't. See @REN21 numbers for 2006 (note that accounting methods have changed since) http://www.ren21.net/renewables-2007-global-status-report/ … #GSR2018



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Re: If not Capitalism... then What? And, How?
« Reply #599 on: June 04, 2018, 04:32:55 PM »
Thanks for the handy charts, Sleepy!

Hey Sig, I just started that book about BS jobs. If you read it, let me know. Maybe it's worth a separate thread?
"A force de chercher de bonnes raisons, on en trouve; on les dit; et après on y tient, non pas tant parce qu'elles sont bonnes que pour ne pas se démentir." Choderlos de Laclos "You struggle to come up with some valid reasons, then cling to them, not because they're good, but just to not back down."