The rise of socialism

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Deleted member 13294

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I'll lay my cards on the table right now. I think socialism as proposed by the current Labour leadership will be a disaster of Venezuela proportions.

https://capx.co/venezuelas-useful-idiots-have-gone-quiet-i-wonder-why/

But given the current popularity of Corbyn, helped by a well received manifesto I thought it might be worth discussing here.

Do people think that nationalisation works?

Do people think you can significantly raise taxes without impact to the wider economy?

Is it "social justice" to attack those that have been successful?

What does everyone else think?
 

Goooner

Distinguished Member
If you're going to be attacked for working hard and being successful, what is the point in working hard and being successful?

May as well sit on your arse all day and let someone else do all the work.

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CLASSROOM SOCIALISM

Is this man truly a genius?

An economics professor at a local college made a statement that he had never failed a single student before but had recently failed an entire class. That class had insisted that Obama’s socialism worked and that no one would be poor and no one would be rich, a great equalizer.

The professor then said, “OK, we will have an experiment in this class on Obama’s plan”. All grades will be averaged and everyone will receive the same grade so no one will fail and no one will receive an “A” …. (substituting grades for dollars — something closer to home and more readily understood by all).

After the first test, the grades were averaged and everyone got a “B”. The students who studied hard were upset and the students who studied little were happy.

As the second test rolled around, the students who studied little had studied even less and the ones who studied hard decided they wanted a free ride too so they studied little. The second test average was a “D”! No one was happy.

When the 3rd test rolled around, the new average was an “F”.

As the tests proceeded, the scores never increased as bickering, blame and name-calling all resulted in hard feelings and no one would study for the benefit of anyone else.

To their great surprise, ALL FAILED and the professor told them that socialism would also ultimately fail because when the reward is great, the effort to succeed is great, but when government takes all the reward away, no one will try or want to succeed.

Human nature will always cause socialism’s style of government to fail because the world has producers and non-producers (makers and takers).

It could not be any simpler than that.
 

The Dude

Distinguished Member
Socialism is no better or no worse than any other kind of pyramid scam.

It's great as a concept if you can begin 2/3 of the way up the organisational chart, but it's a life sentence of state dependence and pigeon-holing for anybody starting at the bottom, ultimately resulting in lost potential.
 
D

Deleted member 293381

Guest
Socialism is not on the rise - it's always been there, waiting.

The recent general election voting and the Corbyn effect just makes it seem socialism is on the rise.
 

nabby

Distinguished Member
Yay, another echo chamber :)

You may as well ask why Trump was more popular than his GOP rivals and then won the election, why Leave won the referendum, heck, even why people protest (peacefully or otherwise).

In a nutshell, they all offered the fed-up populace a chance to vote for something different to the status quo.

You personally might well be happy with how things are (I don't know if you are or not) but many equally are unhappy.

For example, things people might be unhappy about could include:
years of wage stagnation and often deflation; rising costs in housing, rent, fuel, utilities, food, transport; lack of investment over decades in infrastructure; a feeling disconnection from the people we elect; the wealthiest 1% getting richer by fantastic amounts during and since the global financial crisis of 2008 with the vast majority struggling to keep above water; policies that marginalise those on the fringes of society. And so on.
 

rancidpunk

In Memoriam
Yep, agree with Alan and Nabby. Socialism has always been there. Front bench Labour veered away from it during the Blair years, but it was still there in the back benches, so it's a long time since we've been under a socialist rule.
Many not happy with the current situation, as Nabby says, so it's not difficult to see why people would want change in all honesty.
 
D

Deleted member 13294

Guest
Good points @nabby and @rancidpunk

But it did disappear for a reason. Whether fair or not, to many people it's associated with economic failure, strikes, the brain drain, anti-aspiration, etc.

The 70s were much more socialist. Since the economic consensus changed with Thatcher, living standards have improved enormously for the vast majority.

China is a good example of this. Only when they began to embrace capitalism (albeit a highly corporate/government controlled version) did their living standards improve.

Venezuela is an obvious example of how moving to a socialist government has destroyed their economy and trashed living standards.
 

Toko Black

In Memoriam
I'll lay my cards on the table right now. I think socialism as proposed by the current Labour leadership will be a disaster of Venezuela proportions.

https://capx.co/venezuelas-useful-idiots-have-gone-quiet-i-wonder-why/

But given the current popularity of Corbyn, helped by a well received manifesto I thought it might be worth discussing here.

"Do people think that nationalisation works?" - Yes for some types of structure and organisation, no for others. Generally, services that:
- are aimed at providing essential and/or structural needs of a society such as mass transportation, health care, education, policing etc
- are prone to monopolies, cartels and syndicates
- are products or services that are preventative or otherwise don't fit into a economic model of performance/productivity that is measured in numbers of units sold. Example traffic wardens - where the job was all about keeping traffic flowing and preventing accidents, but it's too difficult to
track that performance ... has now evolved into private companies providing parking wardens who are measured on how many tickets they give out which is NOT a measure of safety or efficient traffic flow.

are all services that may well be better suited to public ownership.

"Do people think you can significantly raise taxes without impact to the wider economy?" Taxes are raised and lowered all the time, especially duties. Any change will effect the economy, but the question is not will it impact the economy, but will it impact the economy in a positive or negative way and are those impacts significant. Those questions can be asked about any change to taxation be it up, down or stationary year in year out.

Is it "social justice" to attack those that have been successful? It really does depend on what you mean by 'attack' and what you mean by successful.
I don't have issues with people doing well for themselves in general, but when people are increasing their own wealth beyond any conceivable need while paying the bare minimum to their employees, treating them with less respect and consideration than an office printer and in some cases, profiteering out of pension funds etc, then maybe it's fair to 'have a go' at them.
For me, it's the case that someone can buy a $billion Yacht while others are having to use food banks in a Western democracy.
 

domtheone

Distinguished Member
Socialism is not on the rise - it's always been there, waiting.

The recent general election voting and the Corbyn effect just makes it seem socialism is on the rise.

Valid point.

Personally, I do think it is on the rise (slowly) though.

Might take a few years of a Corbyn government (to educate some - particularly the young) to stem that rise somewhat.
 

The Dude

Distinguished Member
For example, things people might be unhappy about could include:
years of wage stagnation and often deflation; rising costs in housing, rent, fuel, utilities, food, transport; lack of investment over decades in infrastructure; a feeling disconnection from the people we elect; the wealthiest 1% getting richer by fantastic amounts during and since the global financial crisis of 2008 with the vast majority struggling to keep above water; policies that marginalise those on the fringes of society. And so on.

A Euromillions win would do them a lot more good than a socialist government, unless of course there were 30 million people in their lottery syndicate. ;)

Socialism is essentially a lie, probably the biggest ever told imho.
 

Pacifico

Banned
Do people think that nationalisation works?

No - I cant think of any area where Nationalisation would be an improvement. I can think of some (Health) where less Nationalisation would be an improvement.

Do people think you can significantly raise taxes without impact to the wider economy?

Well it would depend what taxes. Increased personal and corporation taxes just encourage people and companies to move offshore or change their behaovour. Increased consumption taxes work in that hey creat more revenue, but they also depress activity.

Is it "social justice" to attack those that have been successful?

No - everyone should pay a fair wack irrespective.
 
D

Deleted member 13294

Guest
"Do people think that nationalisation works?" - Yes for some types of structure and organisation, no for others.

I agree for some structures it makes sense. But I disagree on where the dividing line is.

I think it is dependent on what you pay for directly* and where there is a semblance of choice. We don't pay directly for the NHS, policing, defence, etc. So I've no problem with them being largely government run monopolies.

Energy production, rail, air travel, telecoms, steel, postal services (especially that one!) are no better run by the government than the market. There is still regulation by the government, but to my mind an organisation that relies on winning customers is going to be more efficient than a government monopoly that has no incentive to win over customers on price and service.

I have some qualms about water and energy distribution because of the inability to have a proper market with choice, but believe the current arrangements with private companies has served us well and there is no compelling reason to change other than dogma/ideology.

* The exception being council tax.

"Do people think you can significantly raise taxes without impact to the wider economy?" Taxes are raised and lowered all the time, especially duties. Any change will effect the economy, but the question is not will it impact the economy, but will it impact the economy in a positive or negative way and are those impacts significant.

I think you've just reflected my question back without really answering it.

But as a general point I agree that tax changes whether up or down could have positive as well as negative impacts.

Is it "social justice" to attack those that have been successful? It really does depend on what you mean by 'attack' and what you mean by successful.
I guess it was a loaded question.

But one thing to note... The number of billionaires with yachts is pretty tiny really.
But this tiny minority is used as a basis to demonise people on far from excessive incomes.

I was in the 5% that Corbyn would have raised taxes on. I live in a reasonable 4 bed house but drive a pretty modest Kia Ceed, save money taking packed lunches to work, etc. I already get no benefits whatsoever, and my kids will be penalised for my income by getting less support if they go to university. It's a valid question for me - why bother working hard to see decreasing returns?

I could get a higher quality of life selling up, buying a house outright back in my home town and getting a job in B&Q. It means less tax for the government of course, but at least it's one less 'evil' rich person getting ahead by treating others as if they were worth less than the office printer...
 

Cliff

Distinguished Member
Well France tried socialism with Presedent Hollande. But it was short lived.. It wasn't seen as a success and the voters chose Macron.
If Corbyn was to be PM, I don't believe he could carry out his pipe dream. Wide scale nationalisation is expensive (to buy back) and there will be so many obstacles. Management teams that run nationalised industries were mediocre in the past. When an industry fails there is always the safety net- a government bail out.
I do think we have seen a rise for socialism,usually from the less well off who think their lives will be improved by hammering the rich. (I used that term purposely as the rhetoric from socialist these days is often see as a class war).
At the other end of the scale, the very rich, celebs, BBC and those that can afford to be socialists are pushing the agenda.
 

Toko Black

In Memoriam
I agree for some structures it makes sense. But I disagree on where the dividing line is.

I think it is dependent on what you pay for directly* and where there is a semblance of choice. We don't pay directly for the NHS, policing, defence, etc. So I've no problem with them being largely government run monopolies.

Energy production, rail, air travel, telecoms, steel, postal services (especially that one!) are no better run by the government than the market. There is still regulation by the government, but to my mind an organisation that relies on winning customers is going to be more efficient than a government monopoly that has no incentive to win over customers on price and service.

I have some qualms about water and energy distribution because of the inability to have a proper market with choice, but believe the current arrangements with private companies has served us well and there is no compelling reason to change other than dogma/ideology.

I haven't sat down and written out a manifesto on public/private ownership, so I can't specify exact lines of deliniation, it's more of an off the cuff attempt to provide something of a rough idea of where my position tends to be.

I agree when it comes to certain things we pay directly for/where there is abundant competition, there is certainly scope for free markets, but it's a grey area and rather complex to tie down.
Probably requires a 15 page flow chart that I don't want to have to try and make and you certainly don't want to have to look at ;)

The issues I have are particularly to do with things like:
- bus/train services for example, where for many users there simply isn't enough competition or commercial desire to provide services for smaller communities that still need to rely on public transport.
Unless we force all the old age pensioners, disabled and non drivers to live in high density urban areas with higher commercial demand for transport, services just get cut either completely or to the bare bones.
I personally am lucky that I live in a well serviced public transport area with buses and trams close by, however I am aware of villages and small towns near where I grew up that are having real difficulties.
- Incentives to be productive/meet commercial targets are not always compatible with and sometimes directly or indirectly impact on the core purpose of a service.
The example of car parking tickets is one, where it has become a revenue generator and the incentives are to pump out tickets rather than one of safety and efficiency of transport infrastructure.
Services that are based around providing wellbeing to individuals and the community in terms of safety, health etc are always going to be difficult to combine with a capitalist model.

To me, the UK and most other Western democracies are Social Democracies - the fact that we do have an NHS etc that most of the population want indicates that. I believe there is a disconnect between what socialism, social democracy, communism, capitalism and free markets are and mean to different people. A larger part of the anti-socialism commentary and ideas have originated in the US where by their standards the UK is a socialist country.

Me, I am a practical centrist, I prefer not to view everything through an idealogical lense of free markets or socialism. I prefer to try and take the benefits of each where suitable and avoid their negatives unless those negatives are less significant than the advantages overall for human beings, rather than economies or individuals.
 

B210Bandit

Active Member
Turns out that many people are opposed to the selling off of essential assets to corporate, and especially foreign, control. What a craven nation that permits near neighbours to control its railways, energy systems and other essential assets. It must be an Anglo Saxon disease, this desire to hock off the family silver built up over generations, when a small interest group declares that a profit is not being made. All this talk of Brexit and sovereignty is deliciously ironic in a nation with the most concentrated power in the Western world and dominated by foreign capital.
 

Toko Black

In Memoriam
Well France tried socialism with Presedent Hollande. But it was short lived.. It wasn't seen as a success and the voters chose Macron.
If Corbyn was to be PM, I don't believe he could carry out his pipe dream. Wide scale nationalisation is expensive (to buy back) and there will be so many obstacles. Management teams that run nationalised industries were mediocre in the past. When an industry fails there is always the safety net- a government bail out.
I do think we have seen a rise for socialism,usually from the less well off who think their lives will be improved by hammering the rich. (I used that term purposely as the rhetoric from socialist these days is often see as a class war).
At the other end of the scale, the very rich, celebs, BBC and those that can afford to be socialists are pushing the agenda.

We are a socialist democracy ..... we have free markets and national services, like most European countries.
It's merely the balance of how much is one or the other that changes.
Socialism is a very broad spectrum and doesn't need to have everything run as public/state owned - merely some aspects.

I suppose we could relabel ourselves as a social capitalist democracy if you like :)
 
If you're going to be attacked for working hard and being successful, what is the point in working hard and being successful?

May as well sit on your arse all day and let someone else do all the work.

That's generally what successful people do.


As for the rest you wrote after about the college experiment. The truely successful people who sit about doing nothing allowing others to do the work usually don't have a degree. They usually employ lots who do though
 
D

Deleted member 13294

Guest
That's generally what successful people do.


As for the rest you wrote after about the college experiment. The truely successful people who sit about doing nothing allowing others to do the work usually don't have a degree. They usually employ lots who do though
Lol. Generally successful people sit in their arse all day?

You really believe that? It isn't down to hard work, talent and taking risks?

So the top 5% that Jeremy wants to penalise only have their income from exploiting others?
 
Lol. Generally successful people sit in their arse all day?

You really believe that? It isn't down to hard work, talent and taking risks?

So the top 5% that Jeremy wants to penalise only have their income from exploiting others?

Top 5% successful? Depends on your standards I guess. I'm talking about the top 0.0001% :)
 
D

Deleted member 13294

Guest
Top 5% successful? Depends on your standards I guess. I'm talking about the top 0.0001% :)
Ah. So hardly anybody then. Probably a much lower number than those that game the benefits system.

Corbyn wanted to tax the top 5% more. Which includes me admittedly so I have a vested interest.

Why should I continue to have 13 hour long days out of the house (including commuting time) 5 days a week if there is a decreasing return for my effort? I'm just an employee with every penny on PAYE.

Isn't hard work and aspiration to be encouraged?
 
Ah. So hardly anybody then. Probably a much lower number than those that game the benefits system.

Corbyn wanted to tax the top 5% more. Which includes me admittedly so I have a vested interest.

Why should I continue to have 13 hour long days out of the house (including commuting time) 5 days a week if there is a decreasing return for my effort? I'm just an employee with every penny on PAYE.

Isn't hard work and aspiration to be encouraged?

I would encourage anyone to do what makes them happy. If hard work makes someone happy, do it. If exploiting people would make someone happy, do it. If watching j Kyle all day while drinking beer makes someone happy, then do it. If living rough makes someone happy then do it. Basically doing what makes you happy should come first and foremost :)

The American system where wealth acquisition is first and foremost. Where wealth acquisition is the be all and end all is daft imo :)

The way we measure success in society is totally backward imo. Instead of measuring society success by how much there is, it should be done by how few. So not how many houses you own or cars you drive, but how few people are unhappy, how few are ill or how few Don't have a roof over their head. That's the true measure of success.
 
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domtheone

Distinguished Member
At the other end of the scale, the very rich, celebs, BBC and those that can afford to be socialists are pushing the agenda.

That does annoy the hell out of me.

Blooming hypocrites, many of them.

Spouting on about our failed public services, how we must help the poor, blah blah blah, etc etc.

Whilst, at the same time, many of those rich celebs, BBC etc etc, go to great lengths to protect their wealth with tax avoidance vehicles (which i've no problem with since avoidance is not a crime).

It's obvious that they're not happy paying out at current PAYE levels of taxes, let alone the taxes they would pay under a Corbyn/socialist government(s).
 
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Goooner

Distinguished Member
I would encourage anyone to do what makes them happy. If hard work makes someone happy, do it. If exploiting people would make someone happy, do it. If watching j Kyle all day while drinking beer makes someone happy, then do it. If living rough makes someone happy then do it. Basically doing what makes you happy should come first and foremost :)

The American system where wealth acquisition is first and foremost. Where wealth acquisition is the be all and end all is daft imo :)

The way we measure success in society is totally backward imo. Instead of measuring society success by how much there is, it should be done by how few. So not how many houses you own or cars you drive, but how few people are unhappy, how few are ill or how few have a roof over their head. That the true measure of success.

Sounds good to me.

Who do I see about paying my bills while I give up my job so I can sit at home all day playing guitar and Xbox and watching tv?

Maybe I'll set up a justgiving page :)
 

Goooner

Distinguished Member
That's generally what successful people do.


As for the rest you wrote after about the college experiment. The truely successful people who sit about doing nothing allowing others to do the work usually don't have a degree. They usually employ lots who do though

So if the truly successful weren't there to begin with who would all those employees be working for?
 

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