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  •  Let me explain: Capitalism (10+ / 0-)

    is a conservative notion (though it might have been a relatively liberal notion in feudal days), and it is capitalists who fund the various rightwing/conservative movements, think tanks, propaganda orgs, etc.

    Also, the logic of Capitalism (use money to make money) must inexorably, as natural resources get used up, make its profits from getting ever cheaper labor. Which inexorably causes 2 classes to be, and we are back to feudalism, sooner or later.

    Until we break the corporate virtual monopoly on what we hear and see, we keep losing, don't matter what we do.

    by Jim P on Fri Mar 26, 2010 at 04:45:21 PM PDT

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    •  I concur (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jim P, lams712, aliasalias, DeepLooker

      I am glad you state that it was a liberal notion when speaking about the aristocracy.  There was a small transition from feudalism to monarchial aristocracy.  This period was parallel to leading up to the Age of Enlightenment.

      The aristocracy was in decline and growing poorer while the bourgeoisie class of merchants were growing richer yet had none of the social benefits of the less wealthy aristocrats creating social tension.

      One of the best novels written about this was Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther; the story of a young wealthy bourgeoisie in love with a young countess who was poorer but couldn't marry her because she was of higher social class.  And so killed himself.

      The novel had such a social impact at the time that there were a rash of suicides from young men in the same social position until Goethe had to publically condemn suicide.

      First the Americans and then the French decided they had enough of that aristocrat shit.

      But the capitalism that the bourgeoisie brought with them into the Enlightenment has already died and now we have some sort of hyper-capitalism that no longer even needs the capital in capitalism, just bits and bytes on a computer to make money.  Now the bourgeoisie (merchant class) are the aristocrats and they are crushing the petite-bourgeoisie (middle class).  We don't even need to mention what they are doing to the poor.

      "Where they burn books, they will ultimately also burn people." - Heinrich Heine, Almansor, 1821

      by Jeffersonian Democrat on Fri Mar 26, 2010 at 05:16:03 PM PDT

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      •  Well, gee, thanks buddy (3+ / 0-)

        for making those 3,000 pages of history I read in the past year or two completely superfluous with just a few paragraphs.

        I can't imagine a more elegant and artful summary of the historical development, and current situation, than what you wrote there. Thanks, seriously. Will be saving this one as a pdf, you can bet.

        You might have missed one update:

        hyper-capitalism that no longer even needs the capital in capitalism, just bits and bytes on a computer to make money

        I think it was the Fed Chair who last week floated turning the bankers' reserve requirement to zero! So not only do we have capitalism without capital, we'll soon have money without money.

        These are indeed the Days of Wonders.

        Until we break the corporate virtual monopoly on what we hear and see, we keep losing, don't matter what we do.

        by Jim P on Fri Mar 26, 2010 at 06:01:36 PM PDT

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        •  Yea, that's kinda scary (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Jim P, aliasalias, wmholt

          money without money - it's like having society without rules or laws.

          But I think it is important to remember that capitalism is indeed a liberal system, integral to secular liberal humanism of the Enlightenment.  It is not bad in itself, in fact it is very amoral without value judgements of good and evil.  It just is and it operates on its own terms with rationality.

          Whether we as a society wish to have an amoral, cold, and rational system of economics I think will be the question of this era.

          I tend to give Marx and his Dialectical Materialism more credit than most here.  I think we are seeing his dialectical theory reified in our material world and of course therein capitalism has run its course and turned into something different.

          This new thing of the Enlightenment in France and America scared the European establishment.  It was handled differently in Germany.  They turned to propaganda and used the Romatics to push a patriotic idea of Pan-Germanism to focus the German Tea-Baggers of the time toward fighting against their own self-interests.  That's a tangent subject so I'll just say that ended finally in the rubble of Berlin in 1945.

          Of course now that capitalism has changed, we use the term in Europe "neo-liberalism" which back in the US is referred to "globalization" or "free-markets".

          It's Orwellian speak: just like when neo-liberals speak of "reform", you should become very afraid as it has historically meant cutting the social safety net budget with no mention of cutting bloated military budgets or the like.  (see Clinton, Blair, Schröder)

          "Where they burn books, they will ultimately also burn people." - Heinrich Heine, Almansor, 1821

          by Jeffersonian Democrat on Fri Mar 26, 2010 at 06:25:09 PM PDT

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          •  Thanks for the explanations... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Jeffersonian Democrat

            nice to learn a few things on a Friday night.

          •  I'll disagree with you on Capitalism's inherent (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Jeffersonian Democrat

            evil. The simple fact of interest charges inevitably trends toward an end game where serfdom/slavery is the solution. Sure, while it seems resources are endless, you can afford to pump up a middle class, but the day comes where the only place to get that extra 3% is from people's hide.

            Compound that with fractional banking, and now you've got a system fundamentally unhinged from a real economy. You go boom and bust, with all the dislocations of each, over and over. With insiders positioned to enhance their position on either end of the stick.

            I once had in my possession a wonderful little book from the mid-1800s wherein churchmen still were arguing against usury (which used to mean any interest charge at all, not just exorbitant interest). Most of the R.C. Church had long accepted it by then, of course, but the arguments against capitalism as a destroyer of social bonds still holds. (Though, on the plus side, the dissolution of social bonds in an authoritarian patriarchy is a positive.)

            I say let's enact the Populist Agenda of the late 1800s — take lending out of the bankers hands, make it a government function, keep the interest low to cover defaults, and open and close the lending as the situation calls for.

            Until we break the corporate virtual monopoly on what we hear and see, we keep losing, don't matter what we do.

            by Jim P on Sat Mar 27, 2010 at 12:08:56 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

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