[FoRK] Notable moments in jbone / FoRK history

Russell Turpin russell.turpin at gmail.com
Sat Aug 30 06:50:55 PDT 2008


On Sat, Aug 30, 2008 at 12:27 AM, Jeff Bone <jbone at place.org> wrote:
> "We are all our brothers' keepers."
> "Mutual responsibility."
> "A matter of economic fairness."
> "From each according to his ability, to each according to his need."
> Not a lot of ideological distance between these statements.

Yeah, yeah. I'm not particularly interested in parsing the semantics
between those.

Because socialism was a real movement, and there are still some around
who still advocate it, let me remind people what it means. Socialists
believe that capitalism fundamentally is a bad idea. They would
eliminate the  organization of production in private enterprises, with
transferable ownership. Production instead would be organized in syndics
or in communes or in state enterprises or in some other fashion,
depending on the variety of socialism under discussion.

Socialism is not about the difference between a 39% and 35% top
marginal  tax rate. Instead, it is about eliminating every for-profit
corporation with  which you and I are familiar. In socialism, there
would be a 0% tax on corporate profits. Because there would be no
corporations of the sort now familiar.

Most people today who think on economics view socialism as an inherent
disaster, agreeing with Obama that "the market is the best mechanism
ever invented for efficiently allocating resources to maximize
production." You may disagree that his policies will do so, but Obama
has as much desire as do you in maintaining a healthy capitalist
economy. Even in proposing universal health care, he has avoided the
notion that it should be provided by a national health service, as it is
in Britain. Those who favor a lot of publicly funded social services may
be labeled liberal. Or even social democrats. But unless they want more
of the provision done by nationalized or syndicalized enterprises, it
isn't socialist.


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