Greed

Taxes, finance, economic theory, etc.

Postby admin » Sun May 21, 2006 4:58 am

4tees wrote:So, by your own acknowledgement, a combination of the raw materials, new ideas, and the means of production are required to create actual wealth.


Not by any definition of "means of production" that I'm familiar with, but that is a term with more than one definition, so possibly. To produce new wealth, you need some combination of raw materials, properly skilled labor and/or equipment. Depending on the economic system in place, trade or force is usually used as a means for obtaining these components.

4tees wrote:Why is it then that our GDP is supposedly "growing" even though the raw materials, the means of production, and even the brain power have been consistently moving offshore for the last couple of decades?


Inflation's a big part of it. Since we have a fiat currently, it can be created almost out of nothing (a topic in itself). We also have a growing population, and technology that's continuing to evolve. As one example, just look at how much the Internet has changed things in the last few years. Thanks to the Internet, I'm able to do most of my work from home, and inexpensively communicate with customers around the country and even outside of it.

4tees wrote:I agree with you that capitalism is the answer to many of our problems, but disagree that we should use a form of capitalism that continues to fail.

Do you agree that our system is primarily corporatist and not capitalist?


I think our economic system more closely resembles Keynesian economics than corporatism. I never advocated either system. I'm strongly opposed to both.

4tees wrote:Do you acknowledge that some functions better serve society when operated in a not-for-profit status?


Yes, but non-profit and free market are not mutually exclusive by any means.

4tees wrote:Do you agree that at a minimum, the wealthy owe as much loyalty and responsibility to this nation as everyone else?


Yes.
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Postby 4tees » Sun May 21, 2006 5:18 am

Thank you for answering my questions directly.

The one I forgot to ask is:

Do you agree that for a free market (and therefore capitalism) to function as intended, any and all practices that reduce free market forces should be absolutely and ruthlessly stopped, even when it is the "leaders" or those who have achieved the "greatest success" in said free market that are conducting these anti-competitive practices?
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Postby admin » Sun May 21, 2006 2:24 pm

4tees wrote:Thank you for answering my questions directly.

The one I forgot to ask is:

Do you agree that for a free market (and therefore capitalism) to function as intended, any and all practices that reduce free market forces should be absolutely and ruthlessly stopped, even when it is the "leaders" or those who have achieved the "greatest success" in said free market that are conducting these anti-competitive practices?


Yes, and I would argue that having a truly free market would reduce these problems. Most companies that manage to grow large enough to obtain a monopoly share of a market do so either because the market is very small, or due to government mandate. Standard oil would never have obtained its position in the oil market if the railroads with which it conspired hadn't effectively been granted monopoly status by governments.

AT&T is another example. In 1913, the threat of anti-trust action was used to coerce AT&T into agreeing to allow competitors to connect through its lines. How's that for logic? Identify a potential monopoly, and force it to take an action that only reduces the incentive competitors have to build competing long distance lines. Then again, maybe they were thinking ahead. The telecommunications industry was nationalized 5 years later. The nationalization didn't last long, but was replaced by regulations that effectively blocked other companies from competing with AT&T in the long distance market, allowing them to achieve true monopoly status.
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Postby 4tees » Mon May 22, 2006 6:27 am

admin wrote:
Yes, and I would argue that having a truly free market would reduce these problems.


I agree, but Laissez faire Capitalism can not and will not ever sustain free markets. Laissez faire capitalism is no different than full fleged socialism or communism. All great sounding theories that do not work when exposed to the corrupting influence of human greed in the real world.
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