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Old 10-02-2012, 19:51   #1
IndianaMatt
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Socialism the new communism?

Like we had McCarthyism in the 50s, I'm noticing that the new trend in popular demagoguery is to call someone you don't agree with a Marxist or a socialist (these are actually two totally different, but loosely related concepts). This is usually a sign that you are talking to someone who has no idea what socialism really is, and in 99% of the cases has never actually been to a socialist country.

I've been to a socialist country. We are SO SO far away from socialism.
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Old 10-02-2012, 20:25   #2
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Well, if you want to get technical, I doubt you've been to a socialist country either. A socialist economy is impossible -- the closest the world has seen was the first four years of communist Russia (the "war communism" era), and Pol Pot's Cambodia, where use of money was forcibly banned. As a result, capital was consumed, specialization of labor was crippled, and cities were emptied out as people went directly back to bare personal subsistence-type labor. These types of attempts at "true socialism" inevitably end quickly after mass death and starvation. In Cambodia, Pol Pot was deposed, and in Russia, Lenin introduced the "new economic policy" (which involved use of money again, in order to sustain the economy).

There is a truly excellent online lecture about the argument that a socialist economy is impossible -- a compelling insight first put forward by von Mises back around 1920 or so:
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Old 10-02-2012, 20:35   #3
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A socialist is a communist that hasn't murdered yet.
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Old 10-02-2012, 21:08   #4
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Old 10-02-2012, 23:24   #5
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Originally Posted by IndianaMatt View Post
Like we had McCarthyism in the 50s, I'm noticing that the new trend in popular demagoguery is to call someone you don't agree with a Marxist or a socialist (these are actually two totally different, but loosely related concepts). This is usually a sign that you are talking to someone who has no idea what socialism really is, and in 99% of the cases has never actually been to a socialist country.

I've been to a socialist country. We are SO SO far away from socialism.


"Like we had McCarthyism in the 50s, I'm noticing that the new trend in popular demagoguery is to call someone you don't agree with a Marxist or a socialist"

I remember the days when comparing someone to McCarthy was similar to a "tin foil hatter" today. but i also remember that papers that came from the Kremlin after the fall of the wall proved that McCarthy was a lot more right than he got credit for.

"I've been to a socialist country. We are SO SO far away from socialism"


Entire Countries have been in denial about their State before,(My father told me there wasn't one German, outside of the arrogant SS officers he dealt with, in Germany who admitted they knew what was going on with the camps) so one individual in denial now doesn't surprise me.
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Old 10-02-2012, 23:51   #6
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A socialist economy is impossible -- the closest the world has seen was the first four years of communist Russia (the "war communism" era)
"War communism" was temporary economical policy, brought to life by extreme conditions of civil war, hunger and shortages, and was abandoned right after the war, replaced with NEP (new economic policy), that brought back market.
According to theory, socialism is first faze of communism, when "From each, according to his abilities, to each, according to his labor" principle works. Private property on means of production is abolished, but laws of the market and money are still in use. So, socialism and communism are not something that should be compared. According to theory, communism could not be developed without a period of living in socialism, when communist principals are grown.
So, socialist economy not only possible, it also could be successful. Rice of USSR from ruins of Civil war to number two in the world and somewhere even number one (space exploration, for example) in short decades, teaching us, that with right people in charge, any political system could be successful.
And opposite, even successful capitalist economy could be ruined, with idiots in charge of the country...
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Old 10-03-2012, 00:02   #7
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IndianaMatt,

I don't know what more evidence you're waiting for? Obama is a socialist (yes... really), about two thirds the democrats in the Senate are socialists (yes... really) and the more these socialists promise, give away, and mortgage our future, the more they cultivate fat dumb and happy little socialists...
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:21   #8
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Socialism is dominant in our culture but with innocent-sounding "progressive" codewords instead of traditional German and Russian terms so people don't realize it. Most Democrats nowadays want European-style soft socialism/neo-socialism. Some of the people running our country right now, though, are lifelong communists and calling them socialists is giving them the benefit of the doubt. The "Forward" slogan is an old communist slogan. The traditional scope of religion in public life has been narrowed by the ACA. A creepy cult of personality surrounds the President. Congressional power is being sidelined while executive power is being strengthened including new emergency powers on standby. Every Democrat-picked SCOTUS justice is hard left. One of this country's biggest companies was nationalized. The relatively non-corrupt volunteer military is being shrunk. A permanent voting majority is being created through welfare/healthcare handouts. The only thing missing is gun registration to precede a disarming of the populace.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:00   #9
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IndianaMatt,

I don't know what more evidence you're waiting for? Obama is a socialist (yes... really), about two thirds the democrats in the Senate are socialists (yes... really) and the more these socialists promise, give away, and mortgage our future, the more they cultivate fat dumb and happy little socialists...
It's like some nightmarish flashback to 1928 Germany in many respects.

As for the nice face of Nationalist Socialism, let's peek into MA's future.. http://www.weeklystandard.com/articl...ny_653236.html
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Old 10-03-2012, 14:52   #10
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"War communism" was temporary economical policy, brought to life by extreme conditions of civil war, hunger and shortages, and was abandoned right after the war, replaced with NEP (new economic policy), that brought back market.
According to theory, socialism is first faze of communism, when "From each, according to his abilities, to each, according to his labor" principle works. Private property on means of production is abolished, but laws of the market and money are still in use. So, socialism and communism are not something that should be compared. According to theory, communism could not be developed without a period of living in socialism, when communist principals are grown.
So, socialist economy not only possible, it also could be successful. Rice of USSR from ruins of Civil war to number two in the world and somewhere even number one (space exploration, for example) in short decades, teaching us, that with right people in charge, any political system could be successful.
And opposite, even successful capitalist economy could be ruined, with idiots in charge of the country...
I know you have a Russian heritage and perhaps don't feel like watching the video I linked, but I highly, highly recommend it for understanding why a true socialist economy is impossible.

A very important point is that after war communism and the NEP was implemented, Russia was no longer running according to socialist economic theory. Sure, it was a centrally managed economy, but as you note it brought back money and a market in order to survive and halt the mass death. All attempts at "pure socialist economy" must default to such a system after a very short time, for the economic reasons described in detail in the lecture I linked.

I understand that Russia was eventually quite good at a few politically selected things (at the expense of nearly everything else), but it was good at exactly nothing during the attempt at implementing socialist theory, during which money was banned, and the government truly tried to implement "from each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs."

An analogous situation happened in Cambodia, with the same economic consequences. Their politicians were a bit less willing to compromise the principles of a socialist economy, however, and so their regime crashed and burned after they had left two million deaths from an initial population of 7 million (in 3 years).

It is remarkable that the analysis of von Mises had predicted this inevitable phenomenon already prior to 1920.
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Old 10-03-2012, 15:06   #11
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Funny...I thought the new form of demagoguery was to call someone that disagreed with you a RACIST.

As in how many will call you racist if you disagree with Obama's plans. Somehow...people assume it HAS to do with his race and not his ideas?

I only refer to someone as communist, Marxist or socialist if they exhibit those tendencies and yes...all are slightly different.

Obama is not a communist...he is more of an oligarchical socialist when you examine his policies and actions.

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Old 10-03-2012, 15:47   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndianaMatt View Post
Like we had McCarthyism in the 50s, I'm noticing that the new trend in popular demagoguery is to call someone you don't agree with a Marxist or a socialist (these are actually two totally different, but loosely related concepts). This is usually a sign that you are talking to someone who has no idea what socialism really is, and in 99% of the cases has never actually been to a socialist country.

I've been to a socialist country. We are SO SO far away from socialism.
I don't usually quote Wikipedia, but I don't think they could really get this one wrong. Which of these did you visit that makes you think you have socialism figured out?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...list_countries
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Old 10-03-2012, 15:56   #13
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A very important point is that after war communism and the NEP was implemented, Russia was no longer running according to socialist economic theory.1920.
Interesting... Some economical utopical theory exist, and USSR didn't use it, and this is what... bad thing?
I don't care, whatever you name it, but theory, that was used in USSR in 30-40s, was highly effective. When in hardest of conditions of the war, when half of industrial therritory was lost to enemy, industry of Soviet Union could overcome Germany an the whole industry of occupied Europe, and produce more tanks, aeroplanes and etc, and better quality, then the Axis, we can say; "Whatever you name it, that bolsheviks build, it works very good".
Then came trotskist Khruschov and all start slowly moving to wrong direction.... like today's US...

Last edited by Ringo S.; 10-03-2012 at 15:58..
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:10   #14
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Interesting... Some economical utopical theory exist, and USSR didn't use it, and this is what... bad thing?
I don't care, whatever you name it, but theory, that was used in USSR in 30-40s, was highly effective. When in hardest of conditions of the war, when half of industrial therritory was lost to enemy, industry of Soviet Union could overcome Germany an the whole industry of occupied Europe, and produce more tanks, aeroplanes and etc, and better quality, then the Axis, we can say; "Whatever you name it, that bolsheviks build, it works very good".
Then came trotskist Khruschov and all start slowly moving to wrong direction.... like today's US...
Yah, and at the same time Germany was building a great autobahn and "Folks cars" under National Socialism. How did that work out?
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:18   #15
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Interesting... Some economical utopical theory exist, and USSR didn't use it, and this is what... bad thing?
I don't care, whatever you name it, but theory, that was used in USSR in 30-40s, was highly effective. When in hardest of conditions of the war, when half of industrial therritory was lost to enemy, industry of Soviet Union could overcome Germany an the whole industry of occupied Europe, and produce more tanks, aeroplanes and etc, and better quality, then the Axis, we can say; "Whatever you name it, that bolsheviks build, it works very good".
Then came trotskist Khruschov and all start slowly moving to wrong direction.... like today's US...
You think Stalinism is a good thing??? Yeah, OK.

How many ordinary Russian people were killed because of Stalinism along with the purges and famines? Millions? Far more than Hitler ever dreamed of.
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:29   #16
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You think Stalinism is a good thing??? Yeah, OK.

How many ordinary Russian people were killed because of Stalinism along with the purges and famines? Millions? Far more than Hitler ever dreamed of.
I'd also like to see the destruction of family farms for collective farms addressed. What happened to food production with that genius, socialist move?
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:29   #17
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You think Stalinism is a good thing??? Yeah, OK.

How many ordinary Russian people were killed because of Stalinism along with the purges and famines? Millions? Far more than Hitler ever dreamed of.

Hard to believe that someone could overlook the fact that Stalin holds the worlds record....for killing Russians.
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:39   #18
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I can't believe that there are people who are nostalgic for leaders like Lenin, Stalin and Mao, who combined, killed 100's millions of their own people though their theories and all but ignore that little inconvenient truth. Amazing.
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:51   #19
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I can't believe that there are people who are nostalgic for leaders like Lenin, Stalin and Mao, who combined, killed 100's millions of their own people though their theories and all but ignore that little inconvenient truth. Amazing.
Well, you know the crude old joke (repeated for political value only)

Q: You know the difference between "Rape" and "Rapture" ?

A: Salesmanship.
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Old 10-03-2012, 16:53   #20
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Interesting... Some economical utopical theory exist, and USSR didn't use it, and this is what... bad thing?
I don't care, whatever you name it, but theory, that was used in USSR in 30-40s, was highly effective. When in hardest of conditions of the war, when half of industrial therritory was lost to enemy, industry of Soviet Union could overcome Germany an the whole industry of occupied Europe, and produce more tanks, aeroplanes and etc, and better quality, then the Axis, we can say; "Whatever you name it, that bolsheviks build, it works very good".
Then came trotskist Khruschov and all start slowly moving to wrong direction.... like today's US...
The point is that USSR could not run an economy according to socialist theory because it is physically impossible for anyone to do so, and not because it is a "good thing" or "bad thing," or how vast and beautiful the USSR's killing machines were some 20 years after the socialist economic theory had ended in mass death and was replaced.

Just incidentally, I am right now at this moment wearing a watch that was produced in 1970 USSR -- it is one of the best and most famous that they ever produced. I find it to be a cool piece of economic history. But it is in no way comparable in quality to what the west was producing at the same time.
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Last edited by Chronos; 10-03-2012 at 16:56..
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