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View Diary: Why you're wrong about communism? (With Poll) Updated (41 comments)

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  •  The US should convert to Social Democracy ... (8+ / 0-)

    With a fair distribution of resources everyone in the United States would have their basic needs met.  I know we have been conditioned otherwise, but there is no "Game of Life" to win.  We are all on the same course ... beginning, middle, and end ... despite the mythologies we cloak ourselves in.  It is perfectly possible to both create a humane society, and one that permits the individual to excel and thrive based on their talents ... The Northern Europeans have figured this out.

    I think Social Democracy makes the most sense for the US, and, in fact, in the post WWII era prior to Reagan that was pretty much what the US was running.  A Nation where opportunities are spread more evenly is more stable and has a greater chance to progress, when compared to a Nation that rewards wealth hoarding, and promotes class stratification, as the United States currently does.

    •  Economic "winners" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      isabelle hayes

      You need a certain amount of economic win/loss and a certain amount of return on capital to create economic incentives (and in any event, market forces are efficient allocators but they reward scarcity, not virtue).

      But it's stupid not to insure people against the vicissitudes of a market economy, which is what welfare-state capitalism does.  The capitalists get the productive economic stuff up and running, and the government prevents the capitalists from destroying each other and everyone else.

      And guess what.  In such a system, there won't be a few hundred plutocrats, but there will be lots of less-wealthy-but-still-rich capitalists and a large middle class to support them.  Don't believe me?  Go look at the new business formation rates in places like France, not the exemplar of laissez-faire capitalism.  

      •  WHERE Is the "large middle class" (0+ / 0-)

        here in the U.S., I wonder?

        Unless of course you're dumbing down the definition of middle class income to $20,000-$30,000 per year.

        "It is essential that there should be organization of Labor. Capital organizes & therefore Labor must organize" Theodore Roosevelt

        by Superpole on Mon Feb 03, 2014 at 03:25:39 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Median income is $52,000 (0+ / 0-)

          per household.

          •  Is that supposed to represent a HIGH (0+ / 0-)

            level of wealth?

            Gimme a break, please.

            "It is essential that there should be organization of Labor. Capital organizes & therefore Labor must organize" Theodore Roosevelt

            by Superpole on Tue Feb 04, 2014 at 03:13:57 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  No it isn't (0+ / 0-)

              It's not just the dollar value of that income.  It's the amount of risk that the household has to endure (inadequate health insurance, unstable retirement assets, low employment security) to get there, compared to 40 years ago.  The cost of single payer healthcare per household isn't THAT huge in terms of dollars.  But if you try to fund your own healthcare, that $3,000/year is a drop in the bucket.  Same thing with retirement.  Social security works because there is a large insurance component, only possible because everyone is part of the system.

              Furthermore, "inflation" applies differentially.  Most  inflation between 1970 and now is accounted for by housing, health care, and education (energy costs are also disproportionately represented, but that's not as important as the first three).  On the other hand, a lot of consumer goods have become cheaper.  Some of this is labor arbitrage (clothing, cheap electronics), some of it is technology (computers, cell phones, TVs), some of it is improved product quality (cars, which are more expensive in real dollars, but which last twice as long, get twice the mileage, have twice the power, are many times safer, have lower emissions, etc., etc.).  Most of these are discretionary income, so the benefits go disproportionately up the income scale, not so much to the 1% but to the 20%.  

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