View Poll Results: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

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Thread: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    But you've done a cost-benefit analysis, at which point you placed a monetary value on intangible characteristics (commute, job satisfaction, etc.).

    The difference is that these are very small potatoes in an overall comparison. A more accurate gauge would be something like "what would you do if you found the cure for cancer?" at which point you had choices of giving it away, taking a very small amount, getting what you could deduce as a "fair amount", or just taking every possible cent you could.

    One is a personal scale. The other is a national (or global) scale.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gipper View Post
    But you've done a cost-benefit analysis, at which point you placed a monetary value on intangible characteristics (commute, job satisfaction, etc.).

    The difference is that these are very small potatoes in an overall comparison. A more accurate gauge would be something like "what would you do if you found the cure for cancer?" at which point you had choices of giving it away, taking a very small amount, getting what you could deduce as a "fair amount", or just taking every possible cent you could.

    One is a personal scale. The other is a national (or global) scale.
    I have placed a value on those factors, money works into that internal sense of value, not the other way around.

    We could look at your scenario many different ways. For example, there are plenty of papers published in journals with all sorts of scientific findings and besides the subscription costs of those journals, those findings are pretty much free. What if the cure for cancer is in there? We have had papers that contained info on improving the human condition before and I expect that trend to continue. Alternatively, Pfizer could be the one to make the discovery and I am sure they would try and profit as much as humanly possible. It depends on the individual(s) involved, I think.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman
    We could look at your scenario many different ways. For example, there are plenty of papers published in journals with all sorts of scientific findings and besides the subscription costs of those journals, those findings are pretty much free. What if the cure for cancer is in there? We have had papers that contained info on improving the human condition before and I expect that trend to continue. Alternatively, Pfizer could be the one to make the discovery and I am sure they would try and profit as much as humanly possible. It depends on the individual(s) involved, I think.
    I'm sure I don't have to tell you that grants for research of this nature is in the billions, and that these scientists are making more than a shiny penny for their thoughts.

    I'd bet every dollar I have that if you found someone off the street with no monetary investment that suddenly tripped over "the cure", the chances are infinitessimal that they'd freely give it away.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    People die in any system that places ideology over people.
    Ideology is the key word. Rusell Kirk and Robert Conquest are good sources of scholarship on the topic.

    The ideologue . . . thinks of politics as a revolutionary instrument for
    transforming society and even transforming human nature.

    The word ideology was coined in Napoleonic times. Destutt de Tracy, the author
    of Les éléments d’idéologie (five volumes, 1801-15), was an abstract intellectual
    of the sort since grown familiar on the Left Bank of the Seine, the haunt of all
    budding ideologues, among them in recent decades the famous liberator of
    Democratic Kampuchea, Pol Pot.

    Although it has been the most powerful of ideologies, Marxism—very recently
    diminished in strength—has competitors: various forms of nationalism, negritude,
    feminism, fascism (a quasi-ideology never fully fleshed out in Italy), nazism (an
    ideology in embryo, Hannah Arendt wrote), syndicalism, anarchism, social
    democracy, and Lord knows what all. Doubtless yet more forms of ideology will
    be concocted during the twenty-first century. - Russel Kirk
    http://www.isi.org/books/content/149150chap1.pdf


    Robert Conquest researched the blood shed from the Purge alone.

    In the original version of his book The Great Terror, Robert Conquest gave the following estimates of those arrested, executed, and incarcerated during the height of the Purge:


    Arrests, 1937-1938 - about 7 million
    Executed - about 1 million
    Died in camps - about 2 million
    In prison, late 1938 - about 1 million
    In camps, late 1938 - about 8 million

    Conquest concluded that "not more than 10 percent of those then in camp survived." Updating his figures in the late 1980s based on recently-released archival sources, he increased the number of "arrests" to 8 million, but reduced the number in camps to "7 million, or even a little less." This would give a total death toll for the main Purge period of just under ten million people. About 98 percent of the dead (Gendercide Watch's calculation) were male.
    Gendercide Watch: Stalin's Purges

    In this interview from 1999 he talked to News Hour about how the role of Ideas in what he termed "the ravaged century"

    ELIZABETH FARNSWORTH: Tell us more about that. How did this happen that ideas like Communism, like Naziism became so obsessive that they led to the mass murders?

    ROBERT CONQUEST: I think once you accept that you have the answer to everything, you can do anything to bring it about because your enemies are trying to stop you, are enemies of reason, of truth of everything -- enemies of the future. You represent the people, you represent the nation, you represent everything that is good and that entitles you to destroy the bad people. This is fairly obvious, the type of looking at it. But how did it possess intellectuals? Who are the Typhoid Marys who brought this awful mental affliction into people's lives, into movements and things? That's what was interesting to me - basically - I mean, I naturally develop what they did.

    ELIZABETH FARNSWORTH: And there have been ideas, which were held obsessively and dangerously for many, many centuries. Bu you go back to the French Revolution and point to it as -- at the beginning of the ideas your most concerned about, right?

    ROBERT CONQUEST: It's that time when they first got the motion that you would have a perfect society and you can bring it about by terror and that -- they did both -- the people and the nation, the French Revolution. The nation went to the Nazis, you may say, and the people went to the Marxists. This is putting it crudely. But it's really -- it did affect the whole intellectual class. It's a mental laziness that you have the answers and really study any further than that and how did it happen? I do go into the sort of people who --

    ELIZABETH FARNSWORTH: Tell us about that? Why did it affect so many people?

    ROBERT CONQUEST: Well, it's very attractive in some ways. People do want answers; this is natural, but the ordinary man in the street didn't think he got all full answers. He knew he didn't - it was the intellectual, creating the single, perfect answer and time and time again this has happened.
    Online NewsHour: Reflections on a Ravaged Century -- December 24, 1999
    Last edited by LuckyDan; 05-17-11 at 03:04 PM.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyDan View Post
    Ideology is the key word. Rusell Kirk and Robert Conquest are good sources of scholarhip on the topic.



    http://www.isi.org/books/content/149150chap1.pdf


    Robert Conquest researched the blood shed done by the Purge alone.



    Gendercide Watch: Stalin's Purges

    In this interview from 1999 he talked to News Hour about how the role of Ideas in what he termed "the ravaged century"



    Online NewsHour: Reflections on a Ravaged Century -- December 24, 1999
    The definition of ideology I mean is:
    a set of ideas that constitutes one's goals, expectations, and actions.
    Basically this boils down to any set of ideas on how society should work best. That can be darn well any social model from fully authoritarian to anarchist as well as whatever moral system one wishes to have. My view, is no matter how public or private one wishes to make the system (and again, it could be anything, it could be modern liberalism, conservatism, libertarianism, fascism, socialism, whatever the hell china is, despotism, etc), if they are unyielding vs what society itself wants, a catastrophe will happen.

    Society itself has ebbs and flows like the tide. Culture changes, generations change, technology changes, circumstances change, etc, sometimes we want more government, sometimes we want less, there are times when we want more or less of everything, but a government that does not have the ability to be more capitalistic one day and more socialistic the next will run into issues.
    Last edited by tacomancer; 05-17-11 at 03:10 PM.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    The definition of ideology I mean is:


    Basically this boils down to any set of ideas on how society should work best. That can be darn well any social model from fully authoritarian to anarchist as well as whatever moral system one wishes to have. My view, is no matter how public or private one wishes to make the system (and again, it could be anything, it could be modern liberalism, conservatism, libertarianism, fascism, socialism, whatever the hell china is, despotism, etc), if they are unyielding vs what society itself wants, a catastrophe will happen.

    Society itself has ebbs and flows like the tide. Culture changes, generations change, technology changes, circumstances change, etc, sometimes we want more government, sometimes we want less, there are times when we want more or less of everything, but a government that does not have the ability to be more capitalistic one day and more socialistic the next will run into issues.
    Not on the level of Soviet-Style communism, no sir. If our leaders are unyielding to their constituency, they are voted out.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gipper View Post
    I'm sure I don't have to tell you that grants for research of this nature is in the billions, and that these scientists are making more than a shiny penny for their thoughts.

    I'd bet every dollar I have that if you found someone off the street with no monetary investment that suddenly tripped over "the cure", the chances are infinitessimal that they'd freely give it away.
    Yes there is money for research, however, scientists tend to be motivated by fascination with the subject more than any other consideration. I am motivated by fascination with computers, even though I could make more money as a lawyer, if that's what I wanted to do, but I doubt I would find the job interesting and I am not a naturally competitive person. I could even be a lawyer in my town and still have the same commute. (and trust me, my family is well off, I could go to law school for no money of my own if I asked, so its not a cost-benefit thing for me)

    Also, I disagree with you on your second point, there are some who would seek to profit and some who would not. It depends on one's moral view. I do things for people all the time and get nothing out of it other than knowing I did something good and often not even that (if that person doesn't appreciate it or my actions end up having no or a negative effect)

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyDan View Post
    Not on the level of Soviet-Style communism, no sir. If our leaders are unyielding to their constituency, they are voted out.
    This is why I like democracy over (classical) liberalism. However, to your point, a good example would be, what would happen to this society if the constitution could not be amended and we still had what we had in 1787 while people's values today are very different than they were back then? If you think constitutional interpretation is problematic in our current situation ... (either that or we would have scrapped the whole thing and done something different by now)
    Last edited by tacomancer; 05-17-11 at 03:25 PM.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by megaprogman View Post
    This is why I like democracy over (classical) liberalism. However, to your point, a good example would be, what would happen to this society if the constitution could not be amended and we still had what we had in 1787 while people's values today are very different than they were back then? If you think constitutional interpretation is problematic in our current situation ... (either that or we would have scrapped the whole thing and done something different by now)
    Probably something akin to a war between the states.

    But even your example does not necessarily lead to rule by authoritarians, or men of ideas who know best, and it is classical liberalism that holds there is no divine right of Kings, but that all men are created equal, that we are ruled by law and not men.

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    Re: Should Socialism - Communism be condemned like Nazim?

    Quote Originally Posted by LuckyDan View Post
    Probably something akin to a war between the states.

    But even your example does not necessarily lead to rule by authoritarians, or men of ideas who know best, and it is classical liberalism that holds there is no divine right of Kings, but that all men are created equal, that we are ruled by law and not men.
    I am not trying to lead towards rule of authoritarians, that was your take on it (in fact I tried to reel you back in by specifically referring to a scenario that could have happened with the founding fathers). I am referring to my belief that ideas need to flexible. As far as I can tell, this concept doesn't play into any statist vs individualist charts as its meta to that.
    Last edited by tacomancer; 05-17-11 at 03:52 PM.

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