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Thread: True communism- tried and found wanting!

  1. #1
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    True communism- tried and found wanting!

    Today I woke up thinking about communism and capitalism. Over time, I've heard a lot of negative comments about capitalism--that its not 'fair' and that people are hurt by having to compete and many other things. I was thinking about how the people who espouse communism deny that the USSR was 'true communism'.

    But I was thinking that there are places where 'true' communism has been practiced for thousands of years. I, of course, am referring to the tribes living in the jungle rainforests in Brazil, Africa, and S. Asia. Now, whether or not you think that one culture is 'better' or not, we can say that, in the thousands of years they've been at it, life hasn't changed much in those cultures. They have an extremely high infant mortality rate and are acceptable to minor changes in the environment (1 year drought can wipe out a whole village, etc). These villages share everything. One must share what they kill or find for food, no private property, etc.. so there's no incentive to strive to better your position, no innovation, and no 'growth' as a culture.

    Now, capitalism has only been for a few hundred years and our society has literally rocketed from agrarian to the moon. IMO This is indicative of the effort people will generate when they are able to accumulate private property.
    I'd like to get some feedback from both sides on this issue, especially people who think that capitalism isn't a good system. Thanks!
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    I would recommending reading this description of Marxism:

    http://www.fredoneverything.net/Marx.shtml



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    Quote Originally Posted by Siegfriedson View Post
    I would recommending reading this description of Marxism:

    http://www.fredoneverything.net/Marx.shtml



    .

    LOVED it brother!
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    Cun, the USSR was not Communist.

    For a nation to be communist, a few things need to be in place:
    1) Rule by the workers, essentially a democracy
    2) Classless Society
    3) Communal Ownership

    Now, if you look at the USSR, it was run by a few men, or one man at any one point in time. The workers had virtually no say in the direction of the nation or policy. That is antithetical to Communism. Second, classes did exist. Those higher up within the military as well as those in the party were significently better off and had more rights and powers then the average citizen. The scientists in the military and research cities had much more ownership rights and were rewarded based on a capitalistic method. The more research and applied concepts they produced the more stuff they got, like fridges and cars.

    That's not a Marxist Communist nation.
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    The closes to the idea of communism we get in the real world is when we look at the family as a form of communism. Other real world attempts never got even close to as close to true communism.

  6. #6
    bhbcu64 Guest
    CUNx,

    One must share what they kill or find for food, no private property, etc.. so there's no incentive to strive to better your position, no innovation, and no 'growth' as a culture.

    Why are these necessarily the most important values for a society to have?

    Sounds more than a bit ethnocentric to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bhbcu64 View Post
    CUNx,

    One must share what they kill or find for food, no private property, etc.. so there's no incentive to strive to better your position, no innovation, and no 'growth' as a culture.

    Why are these necessarily the most important values for a society to have?

    Sounds more than a bit ethnocentric to me.
    Perhaps, but my wife watches a show called living with the Mek. Those people haven't changed in 1000 years and they still have a high infant mortality rate, the entire tribe faces death when there is the slightest trouble with the food supply, and they're susceptible to every disease and have no medicine. One bad year can wipe an entire tribe out.
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    Quote Originally Posted by obvious_child View Post
    Cun, the USSR was not Communist.

    For a nation to be communist, a few things need to be in place:
    1) Rule by the workers, essentially a democracy
    2) Classless Society
    3) Communal Ownership

    Now, if you look at the USSR, it was run by a few men, or one man at any one point in time. The workers had virtually no say in the direction of the nation or policy. That is antithetical to Communism. Second, classes did exist. Those higher up within the military as well as those in the party were significently better off and had more rights and powers then the average citizen. The scientists in the military and research cities had much more ownership rights and were rewarded based on a capitalistic method. The more research and applied concepts they produced the more stuff they got, like fridges and cars.

    That's not a Marxist Communist nation.
    No, but the Mek are!
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    Marxism describes a situation following a revolution in a capitalist system. You cannot claim that a tribal society is marxist, it simply doesn't fit the theory. It's worth remembering that developed tribal societies lasted well into the 1700s in western europe and it was only forcible eradication that destroyed them. I'm thinking of course of the highland clans.

    If we're going to take infant mortality as the measure of a society, you will note that (ostensibly) communist Cuba has a lower infant mortality rate than capitalist America.
    “When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist” - Helder Camara
    “It is not the will of God for some to have everything and others to have nothing. This cannot be God” - Oscar Romero
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    First, I'm sure that the Cuban's report whatever they feel is 'good' for Cuba. But I'm sure the difference between Cuba and the US is nothing compared to the US and the Mek or even Mexico and the Mek.
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    Debates about what the "better" system is are as old as the hills and frankly will (IMO) never be resolved for the simple fact that there are serious problems with both systems. For every example like the Mek, I could give you 10 examples of poor, starving trabes in Africa that are based on a capitalist system. Neither system seems to ensure prosperity or to even increase the odds of prosperity.

    Part of the problem with capitalism is with our implementation of capitalism, which more closely resembles feudalism than any classic picture of capitalism. Maybe it is a fundamental weakness of capitalist systems that those who manage to acquire wealth will use that wealth to influence whatever governing power exists in order to codify unfair advantages for themselves. It has certainly happened in every capitalist society we have ever seen, so maybe it is inherent to the capitalist system.

    In all practicality the "best" system for now is probably some mix of the two. IMO part of what has hampered our development as a species over the last several decades has been the idea that there are essentially 2 choices when it comes to the system we live under and we MUST pick one and defend it. The day may well come that we recognize that NEITHER system is the answer to all the worlds ills.

    In the mean time, we seem to have an awful lot of people who would not know a free market if they tripped over it running around arguing that letting the free market sort out industries like the oil industry and health care industry, which are not free market industries either in practice or by their very nature.

    That seems to pollute the issue quite a bit.
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    Quote Originally Posted by daewoo View Post
    Debates about what the "better" system is are as old as the hills and frankly will (IMO) never be resolved for the simple fact that there are serious problems with both systems. For every example like the Mek, I could give you 10 examples of poor, starving trabes in Africa that are based on a capitalist system. Neither system seems to ensure prosperity or to even increase the odds of prosperity.
    And more pointed, Somalia during the warlord eras was essentially anarchy. That is absolutely free capitalism. Yet Somalia's GDP actually decreased significently during those times of absolute free capitalism.

    Maybe it is a fundamental weakness of capitalist systems that those who manage to acquire wealth will use that wealth to influence whatever governing power exists in order to codify unfair advantages for themselves. It has certainly happened in every capitalist society we have ever seen, so maybe it is inherent to the capitalist system.
    That is assumed with Capitalism. The very framework for capitalism to operate properly is one that can be manipulated by those within it.

    In the mean time, we seem to have an awful lot of people who would not know a free market if they tripped over it running around arguing that letting the free market sort out industries like the oil industry and health care industry, which are not free market industries either in practice or by their very nature.
    Well that is partially due to their failure to understand what capitalism actually is. One user I was talking to said that a capitalistic market will take care of the uninsured. He fled the scene after I discussed that capitalist ventures only allocate resources towards things that will be profitable. Uninsured and poverty healthcare is a money losing proposition. Therefore no capitalist venture will engage in it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CUNxTime View Post
    First, I'm sure that the Cuban's report whatever they feel is 'good' for Cuba. But I'm sure the difference between Cuba and the US is nothing compared to the US and the Mek or even Mexico and the Mek.
    Well, I'm basing this on figures from the CIA World Factbook. Are you saying the CIA trusts Cuban propaganda?
    “When I give food to the poor, they call me a saint. When I ask why the poor have no food, they call me a communist” - Helder Camara
    “It is not the will of God for some to have everything and others to have nothing. This cannot be God” - Oscar Romero
    "It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder" - Einstein
    "We do know that no man can be saved except through Christ; we do not know that only those who know Him can be saved through Him" - CS Lewis

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    Are you saying the CIA trusts Cuban propaganda?
    Umm, it's the CIA. Might improve report accuracy?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jo Bennett View Post
    Well, I'm basing this on figures from the CIA World Factbook. Are you saying the CIA trusts Cuban propaganda?

    Their track record hasn't been sparkling, ever since Clinton dismantled them in the 90's.
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