Skip to main content

For Preventing the Poor People in Britain from being a burden to Their Country, and For Making Them Beneficial to The Public

Un hommage á Jonathan Swift

Whenever I travel the country and listen to the newscasts and read the papers, it has become evident that the poor are a significant burden upon the country. Instead of working, women go begging at food banks to provide for their children.  Others sit on the streets with their offspring begging money from their betters. Clearly these lazy creatures assume that we as a society have some responsibility to ensure the existence of their offspring. Moreover, since they have to care for their children, they obviously have no time to actually work to provide for their existence. Their lack of property and their inability to ensure their and their offspring’s survival is threatening the very nature of our society.

 photo 1596dcb2-dfa5-4328-96b9-654a81ad14b8_zps0654321f.jpg

Listening to the enlightened member of the government, Michael Gove, discussing their despair at the difficulty of providing for the poor in a period of falling profit and watching their sincere worry at the sheer indolence and decrepitude  of so many that simply cannot take care of themselves due to their inability to divide their princely sums bestowed upon them by the government for their provenance one wonders at what can be done to eradicate the problems of her majesty’s subjects that are forced to deal with such laziness and drunkenness and lack of respect for the publick good?  Their overabundance of children and dependent elderly and the poor choices of the poor have forced rising usage of food banks which simply cannot be tasked with providing for all this dependency.  Imagine that 1 in 4 people cannot balance their munificent benefits to cover the costs of school uniforms; clearly they have too many children or are obviously spending their money on alcohol.
 photo 4e52ab2d-2fae-4099-9ab9-27fcc7c61b77_zpsffb1f572.jpg
A solution is demanded to get all these lazy people into work. But that is clearly not sufficient as provision for the children, elderly and infirm is needed so as not to undermine the working ability of those that are able-bodied but unwilling to be responsible to survive on wages below the social subsistence level. Imagine that some are working but not earning enough? Clearly that is their fault and they must be forced to work harder. It is insufficient that we cut their benefits further as demanded by our illustrious secretary of works and pensions, Iain Duncan Smith; surely they know that the going rate of wages is determined by supply and demand and that any interference by creating a living minimum wage will simply impoverish everyone?

Moreover, they insist on breeding more wretched versions that eat into the carefully determined minimum wage so carefully designed to ensure their bare subsistence and force their parents to eat insufficient amounts of food to be available at a phone call’s notice for availability of employment.  Raised by the indolent with no knowledge of work ethic and wasting scarce resources of education, they drain the public purse. Needing a next generation of workers, we cannot simply cut them off but we should of course not sustain those unneeded in the future. Obviously, more than two children must be penalised. Some of her majesty’s ministers have suggested punishment by which benefits for children are lowered after more than two progeny. Far too soft-hearted as it gives the parents the opportunity of breeding more than two and then sacrificing their own food which then perhaps would impact on their ability to labour.

A greater bane is the elderly who simply did not have the wisdom to save sufficiently to live a dignified retirement and now are dependent upon the grand state pensions provided by the state.  They dare to live past the age of usefulness to the society and are a drain on the public purse and on scarce resources such as food, the health system, housing, water, electricity and fuel for heating.  They may require additional care which will eat into the subsidies for important sectors like the fracking industry working diligently to ensure our access to natural gas. This can simply not be allowed.

While some misguided members of the public may argue that in fact the problem is one of insufficient need on the part of our leaders of the business community for workers and that work could be created at union wages by her majesty’s government in the sectors  of transport, housing, education and social care of children, the elderly and infirm these people are simply soft-hearted;  simply not understanding that these people are lazy and must be punished in the harshest way possible so as to teach them that laziness has a price.

The creation of a national service suggested by Tory, Labour and Lib Dem members of Parliament has some merits. However, it only demands 1 year at minimum wages either in the (i) charitable work, (ii) social action, (iii) care for the elderly or disabled, (iv) overseas development activity, or (v) work connected with the National Health Service, the emergency services or the Armed Forces; imagine that it only provides one year of cheap labour! Clearly, the children of the wealthy can service overseas development activity and they would not be dependent upon the minimum wage; however, that is insufficient to teach the work ethic to the scions of our indolent so-called working class. While it will save money on wages for our illustrious business community, one year’s labour does not even begin to cover the expenses laid out for their education. Incredibly, it also points to the issue being one of labour demand and why should the government pay for these people’s poor education and choices, when there are more obvious answers?

My immodest proposal

As everyone in the know knows, poverty is a life choice; people choose simply to be poor and lazy. Their inability to manage the beneficence endowed on them by the state and not contribute by providing labour to the public is evidence of their immorality. Immorality should never be enabled. We must stamp it out.

Discussing the matter at length with historians, I have come to the conclusion that the past has much to offer.  If the poor are lazy and unwilling to work as all unemployment is voluntary then we must force them to work.

We have many examples in recent history, but they may be too much for those silly believers in human rights, so we must go further back than the 1940s. Our past has excellent answers for dealing with an old problem: Mister Bentham and the creators of the 1834 Poor Law reform were on the right track.

Since work is punishment, we can open up poor houses. To not impact upon her majesty’s purse, these can be run by the private sector; they merely need to provide common housing, meals and clothes. Since they do not need to purchase things as everything is being provided, wages are redundant. That will save money for both state and business leaders as since they are poor there is no reason to pay them the munificent minimum wage, they can work for their benefits.  Since they will be fed, housed, and clothed, and they as such do not need to purchase things as all their needs are provided for them, even wages are essentially redundant. While some may fear that this will impact upon their consumption and hence upon realisation of profitability of goods produced by the private sector, we are certain that the consumption of these poor souls does not drive the system; that power solely belongs to the savings and investment of the wealthy.  These people can serve the publick good, they even can be used as test subjects for our pharmaceutical industry. If all else fails and they cannot learn the importance of serving their betters with their labour, the perennial shortage of organs for transplant and the use of their wombs to help the wealthy childless can easily be arranged and they will have provided a service to the public.
  photo 2bfcbae4-f922-4818-b111-139c6c668e21_zps70532a70.jpg
While one may accept this for the abled-bodied, what of the disabled? Nothing to fear, as our inestimable Mr. Bentham states:

“A person deprived of all his limbs, or the use of all his limbs may still possess ability sufficient to the purpose of serving as an inspector to most kinds of work, so long as his mental faculties, and sight for observing, and voice for questioning are possessed by him in sufficient rigour (Bentham, 1796, p. 46-7).”
 photo 64220c87-6de7-47bb-9060-4eb235559097_zpsf5125f76.jpg
Why waste money on education for the working classes? They only need to know how to be useful in their roles as workers. They are clearly not learning this from their lazy voluntarily unemployed parents. Happily, the inestimable Mr Bentham comes to the rescue again, alas it will cost the government some money, but it will be recouped with their labour and will teach them at a young age the importance of the work ethic:
“Position 47: From the labour of a Minor, brought up and educated at the public charge, the public may, without injustice, hardship or even deviation from established law, or usage, reap the utmost profit that such labour can be made to yield, consistently with regard due, [...], to the health and permanent welfare of the individual, and that, from the period, whatever it may be, of his being taken under public care, until the expiration of his minority (Bentham, 1796, p. 53).”
That brings us to those too young to provide labour, the disabled that are unable to work and are such a drain on society’s resources and those that are too old and are no longer of any use to society and were improvident enough not to ensure their independent survival.  These answers are so obvious, it surprises one that they haven’t been implemented earlier.

Clearly, the size of the population and the difficulty of producing sufficient quantities of food are leading to the rising prices of food.  After replacement of the next generation of the working class (which we scientifically estimate at two for each family), the rest are redundant.
Meat and feeding grain to the food supply is rising due to the need to sustain the profitability of agribusiness. We can help by increasing the supply of meat; the tender flesh of the very young will better the diets of the poor and can be supplied at a low price and this will improve the ability to labour of the poorest by varying their diets. The flesh of the poor that are severely disabled and elderly and since their organs may be of limited transplant value would certainly serve as fertiliser to ensure an increase in grain production which should cut costs of fertilisers for agribusiness and will also be organically produced.
Since we know that the capitalist system provides full employment, we have no need of supplementing their demand for labour through the creation of state jobs. Clearly those that are unemployed are lazy and do not want to work at the going wages.  If workers wanted more bargaining power in contract negotiations they would stop breeding.

Instead of encouraging cooperatives and alternative forms of production and consumption, we know that competition and the steady invisible hand of capitalism will provide for all who are willing to contribute their labour.

Instead of creating jobs by the state in sectors in which there is dire need like green manufacturing, transport, education, health care, child care, care for the elderly and infirm and building desperately needed social housing and where people receive long term training to do these jobs, have job protection and are paid union wages, why pay wages at all?
Instead of taxing wealth (land and stock portfolios for example), taxing all financial transactions, capital gains and corporations as well as  introducing a more progressive income tax, why should we worry about the needs of the vast majority?

Instead of guaranteeing access to drinking water, health care, energy, heating and transport for all, we only need to cover those whose wealth deems them deserving of these luxuries. The wealthy have earned these things due to their greater intelligence, foresight in saving instead of consuming, and their obvious greater abilities than those without property.  Redistribution of wealth will only impoverish all of the country as the poor cannot make good choices about managing their largesse.

Instead of ensuring income and services from cradle to grave, we can provide physical subsistence as long as people are able to give their labour. The wage is what the wage is, demanding a relationship to the costs of living only undermines profitability and we cannot do that in a period where certain sectors are facing declining profitability.

Instead of dumping the whole capitalist system where people’s needs are subsumed to profitability, where the planet is being destroyed in the name of profit and where people themselves become economically redundant, we should extend the system to the point where profitability is the only concern of governments as well as business and where voting is solely done by the propertied classes.

I beg you give my immodest proposal the consideration it deserves. To quote the inestimable Jonathan Swift whose own writing has provided the inspiration for this essay:

“I profess, in the sincerity of my heart, that I have not the least personal interest in endeavoring to promote this necessary work, having no other motive than the public good of my country, by advancing our trade, providing for infants, relieving the poor, and giving some pleasure to the rich.”  
My deepest gratitude to

Bentham, Jeremy, (1796) "Essays on the Subject of the Poor Laws, Essay I and II," in Writings on the Poor Laws, Volume I, pp. 3-65.

Swift, Jonathan (1729) "A Modest Proposal For Preventing The Children of Poor People in Ireland From Being A burden to Their Parents or Country, and For Making Them Beneficial to The Public." (http://art-bin.com/...)

and the ConDem government without whom this essay would be sincerely unnecessary ..

Originally posted to Anti-Capitalist Meetup on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Income Inequality Kos, Global Expats, and Community Spotlight.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (34+ / 0-)

    "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

    by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:00:31 PM PDT

  •  Tonight's anti-capitalist meetup has been (11+ / 0-)

    "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

    by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:13:17 PM PDT

  •  shall we lobby for solent green (11+ / 0-)

    as a solution to all our problems?

  •  ACM schedule (6+ / 0-)

    September

    22nd: Le Gauchiste
    29th: Annieli

    October

    6th:
    13th:
    20th:
    27th:

    Comrades, as we ponder the future of the majority may I humbly ask for volunteers for the month of October? Which of you has the time to write something for the series? I know that you have the ideas, what is needed is some time ... this series does serve a good purpose and we should keep it alive. Please respond here if you can write something! In solidarity, NY Brit Expat

    "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

    by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:18:18 PM PDT

  •  eating the 1% seems far more preferable (11+ / 0-)

    although they probably have high cholesterol content

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:27:57 PM PDT

  •  I love how impeccably groomed (11+ / 0-)

    these Tories are when they are denigrating the poor for their feckless behaviour. Perhaps extreme metrosexual behaviour is a prerequisite while lambasting the slovenly habits of the lower classes. If unwed mothers bothered to frequent salons before they toddled off to their minimum wage jobs, employment in the service industries would skyrocket, and the world would be a better place.
    Well done NYbrit. The disjunct between what conservatives preach from their gated communities and reality on the ground is astounding. One can't help but thinking that they consider the majority of us as Maruta, logs, rubbish, less than human.

    “The universe implodes. No matter.” -Liam Williams

    by northsylvania on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:28:39 PM PDT

    •  and the lack of proper dress of their betters (8+ / 0-)

      clearly not being sufficiently aspiring ... certainly they should know how to dress their children for success as they clearly have no money to get school uniforms; as though these children need education anyhow given the lack of work ethic by their parents ... why didn't they watch the whole discussion during london fashion week on the BBC by two fools talking about the importance of accessories? They even showed a 5 minute interview of the two sitting on a park bench, they were drawn to each other due to their hats. It is clearly a lack of hat wearing that gives clues to their lack of aspiration.

      Thank you! I woke up in a really bad mood and this was the result!

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:36:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  fortunately, my auto-icon will be virtual (8+ / 0-)
    Bentham had originally intended that his head should be part of the Auto-Icon, and for ten years before his death (so runs another story) carried around in his pocket the glass eyes which were to adorn it.

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:32:26 PM PDT

  •  not to change the subject (10+ / 0-)

    but all these congratulations for 11th dimensional chess are giving me whiplash.

    the crawl at the bottom of tv screen is that turkey doubts the current putin/obama agreement can possibly hold.

    i think we are on a terrifying trajectory and will not only have to endure what is coming, but will have to endure endless debates, distracting us and our feckless congress from the zillion problems we need to confront.

    •  Distraction is the name of the game... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JayRaye, NY brit expat

      After all, they don't want the rabble to revolt once the majority finally realizes just how bad things truly are.

      will not only have to endure what is coming, but will have to endure endless debates, distracting us and our feckless congress from the zillion problems we need to confront.

      Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

      by AuroraDawn on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 02:12:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  in case anyone forgot, this is on next weekend (8+ / 0-)

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "I’m not the strapping young Muslim socialist that I used to be" - Barack Obama 04/27/2013

    by annieli on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 03:48:12 PM PDT

  •  This is surely, . (11+ / 0-)

    THE SEASON OF SCROOGE:  THE SEQUEL

    Yes, it is true Tiny Tim, that in almost every generation we must relearn how to be human.  That is, to understand and perhaps accept the Theory of Evolution which is this:  We have evolved over a million or so years most of which were only of a survival of the fittest NATURE.  Now, there is abundance and we must make choices about how to allocate this abundance so there is food, clothing, housing, health care, education, and access to jobs for all the citizens of the Earth.  When these items above are scarce and we fight with each other and kill each other, we call this war.  War seems endemic to human societies.  That is almost like it is NATURE:  a quick form of execution of others so you can survive better.  But you see Tiny Tim we are no longer hitting each other with clubs, the preferred weapons of our cave-people ancestors.   Now, lethality is at our finger tips.  A whole continent can be wiped out of human life, now.  It is time for all ethical-moral evolutionay mechanisms to advance protection for our life.  Survival of the fittest does not mean brawn and weopons:  it means change of heart of Scrooge at the end where he sees people with joy and kindness.  

    The Tories in England and the GOP, Tea Party in the US have lost their way, they have become Jacob Marley, a ghost bearing enourmous chains, (from Scrooge) condemned to wander in the world between for eternity.  

    Scrooge became enlightened, what will happen to the current crop of Tory, GOP, Tea Party is for the future.

    •  that is wonderful Boston Beans ... (6+ / 0-)

      look what a reference to history brings out in all of us! Thanks for such a wonderful comment ... you made me smile through all my anger and bitterness today! :)

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 04:33:08 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  and the thing is WE DO NOW HAVE ABUNDANCE (4+ / 0-)

        and we don't have a clue how to proceed except for bombing each other back into the stone age so we can use our resources to build from scratch.

        this is how dysfunctional capitalism is: it may have been key to creating abundance and now we don't have a single clue how to distribute that abundance.

        i would not have thought to believe in abundance without reading "Sacred Economics" but Eisenstein makes a great case for believing that we are, indeed, living in an age of abundance although climate change will surely reverse that.

  •  Great diary, expat! (4+ / 0-)

    Sorry to be late, just got home from work.

    What a treat to come home to this diary!

    God spare me the Heart to fight them... I'll fight the Pirates forever. -Mother Jones

    by JayRaye on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 04:43:08 PM PDT

    •  hey JayRaye! (5+ / 0-)

      As I said earlier, woke up in a vile mood and started writing ... it was a good thing that I get rid of my anger by spitting bile on my computer as LeGauchiste who was writing for tonight became ill ... who said anger and bitterness do not do anything?! So glad you like it, I was worried that no one would realise that it was satire as people to this day didn't understand that Swift's piece was satire! :) A good writing exercise and my very bitter humour is showing!

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 05:00:31 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Good satire is hard to write. (4+ / 0-)

        And this was was great!

        Spotlight! Well deserved.

        Good use for bitterness and anger!

        I used to be one of those worthless welfare mothers, so I esp appriciate this type of dark humor. Sometimes it's all we have to hang onto.

        But then when I got a job in construction, all I heard for the next 7 years was how I was taking a good paying job away from a man who had a family to support!!! (That, and whoever I must have fucked to get the job.)

        God spare me the Heart to fight them... I'll fight the Pirates forever. -Mother Jones

        by JayRaye on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 05:37:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thank you again! I found it good, but (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JayRaye, mint julep, annieli

          I can never tell whether it is my odd and cynical bleak sense of humour or whether it was actually good ...

          Argh!!! of course you stole a job from a man that needed to support his family (like you didn't have a family or anyone to support as that is men's role in society) ... and the favourite accusation irrespective of your talent, knowledge and skill, you must have slept with someone to get the job (cannot tell you how many times I have heard this about incredibly talented women in many different professions) ... just makes me want to resort to things that I think are a bad way to deal with social problems ...

          "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

          by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 05:57:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Great diary Ex Pat. Unfortuantely, the call for (5+ / 0-)

    poor houses does not seem that absurd when I see the way private industry has monopolized the prison/industrial complex. Private industry has already made billions off of prison workers. (The only type of slavery that the 13th amendment does not outlaw in the US constitution is in prison. )

    •  yep ... it does not seem absurd at all, I am (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JayRaye, mint julep

      honestly expecting them to reintroduce them through the private sector ... just because it is satire does not mean that they will not do it. It is so close to so many proposals that they have advocated that simply stretching them a bit more so they seem absurd is the point. Can you imagine that the secretary of works and pensions actually said that the working poor do not earn enough and that they will cut their benefits? Can you imagine that someone actually said that and meant it ... when reality is absurd, it is hard to do satire as reality constantly pushes the envelope outwards ...

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 06:04:13 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Ask one of these wretches if he had not rather... (3+ / 0-)

    been killed at two years of age than to have lived a lifetime of want.

    I'm teaching A Tale of a Tub just now, and it's like being able to be drunk on the job.

    I pointed out earlier today that Adam Smith said that demand would be the most efficient and wisest way to achieve supply, but that was purely a postulate. There was no proof, and there has been no proof. No one that I know of has actually demonstrated that capitalist (rather than free market) systems respond either more efficiently or more wisely than owner-operators or governmental oversight.

    Since the capitalist system is always in response, it seems to me that all of its actions are lagging, like a shadow, behind the actual conditions of labor, market, and capital. The capitalists have whipped their minions to the bone to get the lag time on capital and market interest down, but they really don't believe that they need to respond to labor changes.

    Everyone's innocent of some crime.

    by The Geogre on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 06:52:42 PM PDT

    •  In fact there is evidence to the contrary just (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Geogre, JayRaye

      on the provision of services and accessing them. What is happening here is that the price of electricity, heating, water and transport (that are privatised) are eating into incomes that have been falling for 20 years. I read earlier this week, that over 60% of the population wants these nationalised. Needless to say no party is advocating renationalisation irrespective of the demand of the public. To add insult to injury they have started privatisation of the post office even though it is profitable and hence contributes to gov't revenue and irrespective of the majority of the population opposing privatisation.

      The most ridiculous thing is the public-private partnership where the gov't essentially covers long-term investment and the profits are reaped by the private sector. Once profitability enters the equation, inevitably service provision declines both in terms of everyone being able to access these services (due to insufficient income) and the fact that the private sector simply refuses to do repairs needed to ensure provision.

      In terms of Smith, in terms of both the gross and net product, he argued that demand determines supply in terms of both the quantity and composition of output. It was later arguments that accepted Say's Law that insisted that supply determines demand ... whatever will be produced will be consumed. In later economic arguments (Neoclassical) this specifically relates to the capital market and saving (supply) and investment (demand) for capital. A more coherent discussion on demand determination relates to expected effective demand, but that is never precise (neither was Smith's argument) and that time lag is what leads to both short-term over-production or underconsumption. For post-Keynesians, this is a long-term problem as the theory of effective demand returns to a long-term issue where demand (and expected demand) is what essentially enables economic growth in the capitalist system as opposed to the babble of Say's Law.

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Sun Sep 15, 2013 at 07:05:42 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  In Sweden as well (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JayRaye, NY brit expat

        The public builds the sewers, the electric system, the libraries, the roads, etc., and then a conservative government says that the #1 problem is taxation and decides to sell something. "Hey, why not sell the power company? The American power companies are more efficient than ours." So, 100 million pounds (total investment by the public, adjusted for inflation, somewhere in the billions or trillions) go into the "profit" side for the government, which is running "like a business." Then, though, the national electric starts to act like a private electric: maximizing profit per unit.

        In Sweden, it's hospitals. The public is trembling in fear as each one gets sold. Even in America there are things left to sell, and cities sell off their water pipes.

        The time lag in capitalist (or Keynesian) response is the critical problem. In capitalism, market hoarding creates a famine, and then market flooding feeds, but first, hundreds of thousands starve. In governmental "excess," expected demand can be slowed by inefficiencies, and sometimes idiotic political parasitism (the Soviet), but the base will complain a whole lot more quickly than the capitalist will notice.

        To me, it's all back to the original sin of substituting aggregated market capital for individual markets. Then again, I may get to be a pre-industrialist Luddite (but not a William Morris type).

        Everyone's innocent of some crime.

        by The Geogre on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 03:54:45 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I recall my long ago high school days when our (4+ / 0-)

    English literature teacher had the entire class open our literature textbook to Swift's brilliant work and all read it silently.

    The stifled giggles (including mine) and shocked gasps were priceless when we all reached the same sentence summarizing his proposal.

    That's when I became a progressive.  

    "There's something wrong with a system where a handful of people have more than they'd ever need and the mass of the people have less than they always need." -- Rev. Joseph Lowery

    by caul on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 01:17:50 AM PDT

    •  He wrote it to shame those who (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JayRaye, annieli, caul

      claimed to care about the poor but of course blamed the poor rather than the system for poverty; he gave them the obvious conclusion of their logic. He did a wonderful job ... it didn't stop them, but it exposed their hypocrisy for what it was.

      They use the pamphlet in the UK to teach children what satire is and to get them to understand how to argue an absurd point when you mean something else. I love this piece and have been wanting to do something in homage to him; I knew that sooner or later the Tories would cross that line from hypocrisy to sheer hate and they did it.

      Compare Swift (who was an Anglican reverend practising in Ireland) to that of Malthus (also a reverend but a political economist) and there see the difference between a human being and a beast.

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 03:41:15 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Brilliant diary, tipped and rec'd. n/t (4+ / 0-)

    Nothing in the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

    by AuroraDawn on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 02:18:08 PM PDT

  •  brilliant! tip'd & rec'd. did you catch the piece (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    waterstreet2013, NY brit expat

    on the bbc's site about the catholic nun in spain who wants to eliminate capitalism? really interesting.

    •  many liberation theologists want to (0+ / 0-)

      eliminate capitalism; what is sad is that we don't hear enough about them.

      Thank you for the tip and rec and your support! :)

      "Hegel noticed somewhere that all great world history facts and people so to speak twice occur. He forgot to add: the one time as tragedy, the other time as farce" Karl Marx, The Eighteenth Brumaire of Louis Bonaparte .

      by NY brit expat on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 06:01:17 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Indeed. Messrs. Gove & Co have blown £2-billion (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NY brit expat

    in cost overruns to construct what should have been a simple online data entry system for UK's welfare offices and related business reporting.

    There are two prime boondoggles: Universal Credit and Real Time Information.

    The both of them were set up to generate massive contractor payments. What should have come in for the UC part as a simple £10-million front end to a commercial Accounts Payable package was re-cast as a ground up, blank page money-burner.

    So of course the Coalition boys are well dressed. They are interviewing for their slots with the contractor gangs.

    Both projects avoided using existing off-the-shelf programming. That should have been the tip off that corruption was afoot. No one in business EVER builds an accounting system from scratch.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site