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Thread: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

  1. #141
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    Then don't claim not to hate America when you want to see its foundations completely destroyed.
    As I see it, you seem to be the one here who hates America. After all, I've proposed the expansion of democracy from republicanism to participatory direct democracy and the expansion of liberty by extending such democracy to the economic realm and instituting workers' self-management, proposals that would undoubtedly aid Americans. Conversely, you stand in opposition to such proposals, hindering their progression.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    Both the USSR and Cuba used what is known as "Soviet Democracy" which sounds exactly what you are calling for when it is implemented on a mass scale.
    That is completely wrong, and is based on a severe misunderstanding of socialist political economy that many misinformed anti-socialists apparently suffer from. Regardless, since you've apparently ignored the matter of Kropotkin's 1921 letter to Lenin, why not have another look this time?

    Russia has already become a Soviet Republic only in name. The influx and taking over of the people by the 'party,' that is, predominantly the newcomers (the ideological communists are more in the urban centers), has already destroyed the influence and constructive energy of this promising institution - the soviets. At present, it is the party committees, not the soviets, who rule in Russia. And their organization suffers from the defects of bureaucratic organization. To move away from the current disorder, Russia must return to the creative genius of local forces which, as I see it, can be a factor in the creation of a new life. And the sooner that the necessity of this way is understood, the better. People will then be all the more likely to accept [new] social forms of life. If the present situation continues, the very word 'socialism' will turn into a curse. That is what happened to the conception of equality in France for forty years after the rule of the Jacobins.
    These standard attempts to link anarchism and libertarian socialism to the Soviet Union are utterly idiotic simply because of the fact that these libertarians were the first ones to condemn Bolshevik authoritarianism. Even prior to that, Mikhail Bakunin was critical of the excessive hierarchical elements of Marxist organizational principles and warned that such elements could be utilized by the authoritarian. The predictions of these individuals were in many ways prophetic, and the response from the novice anti-socialist is to compare anarchist organizational principles to the Soviet Union?

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    lol employee stock options are not the same thing as worker cooperatives. This was a study of a capitalist system in which workers work with owners and management not a study of workers cooperatives and where do we go to find actual large scale worker cooperatives?
    That is incorrect. While there are certainly major distinctions between mere partial ownership schemes and the establishment of democratic management itself, you'll note that the meta-analysis itself noted that full democratic management produced superior results to mere ownership. This is consistent with similar empirical research by analysts Logue and Yates of Ohio ESOP's, when it was noted that the mere implementation of the ownership schemes by themselves could not match the greater productivity yielded with the parallel implementation of worker participation in the management process, as illustrated by the fact that a democratic or otherwise board selection process resulted in increases in profit as well as quantitative and qualitative performance.



    This is of course consistent with their observation in Cooperatives, Worker-Owned Enterprises, Productivity and the International Labor Organization that "worker-owned enterprises equal or exceed the productivity of conventional enterprises when employee involvement is combined with ownership."

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    Well that would be in highly inefficient economies like that of Chavez's Venezuela.
    The preservation of a state and republicanism is of course ultimately unacceptable to me, but it seems more accurate to note that the expansion of labor cooperatives has been a boon rather than a bane to the Venezuelan economy. The Bolivarian Revolution has been largely successful in that oil nationalization has promoted successful increases in economic growth, and viable socialist economic policies have also promoted social benefits in addition to this growth. As noted in The Chávez Administration at 10 Years: The Economy and Social Indicators:

    The current economic expansion began when the government got control over the national oil company in the first quarter of 2003. Since then, real (inflationadjusted) GDP has nearly doubled, growing by 94.7 percent in 5.25 years, or 13.5 percent annually.

  2. #142
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Moreover, as Robin Hahnel notes in Venezuela: Not What You Think, this economic growth has also had the effect of combating unemployment, which is of course a form of static inefficiency.

    Like most Latin American economies, the Venezuelan economy deteriorated during the 1980s and most of the 1990s. From 1998 to 2003 real per capita GDP continued to stagnate while the Chavez government survived two general strikes by the largest Venezuelan business association, a military coup, and finally a devastating two month strike by the state owned oil company. However, after Chavez survived the opposition sponsored recall election, annual economic growth was 18.3% in 2004, 10.3% in 2005, and 10.3% in 2006, and the unemployment rate fell from 18.4 % in June 2003 to 8.3% in June 2007. Moreover, most of the growth was in the non-oil sectors of the economy, as the oil sector barely grew during 2005 and 2006. While this impressive growth would not have been possible without the rise in international oil prices, it also would not have been possible had the Chavez government not ignored the warnings of neoliberal critics and pursued aggressive expansionary fiscal and monetary policies.
    My belief is that Venezuela have prospered because they have not sought to utilize the centralized state capitalist model of the Soviet Union (inaccurately depicted as "socialist" by so many, including you), and have instead promoted decentralized collectivization. Indeed, it is not possible to overemphasize the critical importance of participatory governance and worker-owned enterprises in this new era of prosperity. Hahnel goes on to note the successful nature of the worker-owned enterprises that were previously discussed in this thread.

    New worker-owned cooperatives not only provided much needed jobs producing much needed basic goods and services, they also featured what was soon to become a hallmark of Bolivarian socialism -- popular participation at the grassroots level. When Chavez was first elected President in 1998, there were fewer than 800 legally registered cooperatives in Venezuela with roughly 20,000 members. In mid-2006 the National Superintendence of Cooperatives (SUNACOOP) reported that it had registered over 100,000 co-ops with over 1.5 million members.3 Generous amounts of oil revenues continue to provide start-up loans for thousands of new cooperatives every month, and the Ministry for the Communal Economy continues to spearhead a massive educational program for new cooperative members. However, the ministry provides more than technical assistance regarding technology, accounting, finance, business management, and marketing. It also teaches participants about cooperative principles, economic justice, and social responsibility.
    Hence, I would find that to be in ideological tandem with libertarian principles of decentralized social and economic structures governed through democratic frameworks.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    The idea that you can run an efficient business democratically is laughable.
    As illustrated by a vast empirical literature on the matter, democratically managed enterprises routinely exceed the productivity levels of the orthodox capitalist firm. A theoretical approach will illustrate why this should be true. For example, consider principal-agent problems (or "agency dilemmas"). Their primary cause is the divergence of interests between owners and managers, so that the "principal" (the owner) is confronted with the task of compelling the "agent" (the manager) in some manner, typically with utilization of profit sharing or some similar mechanism. This problem is eliminated in the worker owned and managed enterprise because there is no divorce of ownership and management that exists.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    Not to mention that a society in which all businesses are ran this way would simply grind to a halt and resort to the centralized planning board IE welcome to the Soviet Union. "How much rice do we want to produce this year?" "Let's put it to a vote." Oops now the masses are starving.
    This is also completely wrong. Few socialists advocate the utilization of central planning boards (Leninists do, but they are not socialists), and instead propose either the usage of markets as resource allocation devices or decentralized and participatory economic planning, which is wholly distinct from the centralized and authoritarian economic planning that the USSR employed. Indeed, libertarian socialists realized the folly of such an endeavor, with the aforementioned anarcho-communist Peter Kropotkin commenting on the unfeasibility of centralized, authoritarian planning because of information problems that would be involved.

    Production and exchange represent an undertaking so complicated that the plans of the state socialists . . . would prove to be absolutely ineffective as soon as they were applied to life. No government would be able to organize production if the workers themselves through their unions did not do it in each branch of industry; for in all production there arise daily thousands of difficulties which no government can solve or foresee. It is certainly impossible to foresee everything. Only the efforts of thousands of intelligences working on the problems can co-operate in the development of a new social system and find the best solutions for the thousands of local needs.
    You'll keep in mind, of course, that this was prior to the publication of Mises's Economic Calculation in the Socialist Commonwealth and certainly prior to the ruminations of Hayek on assorted knowledge problems in his debate with Lange, Taylor, Lerner, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Ferris View Post
    I think I'll do without the mass executions of your supposed non-statist libertarian communists. lol the basic principle of libertarianism is that the use of force itself is immoral and yet your glowing example of libertarian communism implemented mass executions against those they considered bourgeois.
    There were some admitted excesses by certain contingencies of the anarchist movement, but aside from the fact that this occurred in a wartime environment when they were to soon be subject to sabotage and destruction from their alleged "allies," that does no more to discredit anarchist organizational principles themselves than other anomalous deficiencies of that movement (such as their alliance with the Republican government) did. And that doesn't alter the fact that 40% of the population voluntarily chose to reside in anarchist collectives and communes, which is decidedly more "libertarian" than the coercive integration of workers into the capitalist labor market. Don't commit perfectionist fallacies. Oh, and more than that, anarchists created and used the term "libertarian" more than a century before its misappropriation by capitalists. Don't forget it.

  3. #143
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    The right wing extremists are by far the more dangerous of the two.

    The left is full of eco-terrorists who want to protect the environment.

    The right is full of greedy, business-owing ****bags that seek get keep the rich, rich, the poor, poor and the middle class paying for everything.

    The far right supports corporate welfare; the left supports welfare for the working class.

    I suppose if I were a far right wing business owner I would feel different; however, I am a poor, overworked, middle class American.

    As obviously subjective as this question is; I believe the right extremists are far more dangerous for the majority of Americans.

  4. #144
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Communism is not a form of the right at all. Whoever said that is completely wrong.
    [ame=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communism]Communism - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia[/ame]
    Communism (from Latin: communis = "common") is a socioeconomic structure and political ideology that promotes the establishment of an egalitarian, classless, stateless society based on common ownership and control of the means of production and property in general.
    The two most influential theoreticians of communism of the 19th century were Germans Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels,
    ...communism is a leftist ideology.

  5. #145
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    The right wing extremists are by far the more dangerous of the two.

    The left is full of eco-terrorists who want to protect the environment.

    The right is full of greedy, business-owing ****bags that seek get keep the rich, rich, the poor, poor and the middle class paying for everything.

    The far right supports corporate welfare; the left supports welfare for the working class.

    I suppose if I were a far right wing business owner I would feel different; however, I am a poor, overworked, middle class American.

    As obviously subjective as this question is; I believe the right extremists are far more dangerous for the majority of Americans.
    And you call yourself a Centrist. Hahahahahaha Proves my point about moderates and centrists over and over and over.
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

  6. #146
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Not really; isn't he a neocon?

  7. #147
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Quote Originally Posted by Agnapostate View Post
    Not really; isn't he a neocon?
    Did you read his 'leaning'?
    "He who does not think himself worth saving from poverty and ignorance by his own efforts, will hardly be thought worth the efforts of anybody else." -- Frederick Douglass, Self-Made Men (1872)
    "Fly-over" country voted, and The Donald is now POTUS.

  8. #148
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    I believe the far right is more dangerous to America because they don't see democracy as something worth defending.

    In the words of Benjamin Franklin "There Never Was a Good War or a Bad Peace."

  9. #149
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Quote Originally Posted by paris View Post
    I believe the far right is more dangerous to America because they don't see democracy as something worth defending.
    On what do you base this?

  10. #150
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    Re: Which extreme is more dangerous to America?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goobieman View Post
    On what do you base this?
    On the OP
    Last edited by paris; 07-13-09 at 05:12 PM.

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