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Author Topic: A Resource Based Economy  (Read 261052 times)
LightRider
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November 13, 2013, 07:43:01 AM
 #1641

Your continued assertions that I want to do terrible things to people, while hilarious, are ultimately indicative of an intellectually dishonest personality. If you want to see horrors on such a scale, you need only to look at what capitalism, which you admire so much, has done to the people and environment of the world.

All you have to do to refute this is to explain how you plan to convince people to have their resources controlled for them. We had this discussion a year ago, and it never really went past the point at which someone said "won't this system fall apart as soon as a few people decide they want to trade things instead?"

I don't have to convince anyone of anything. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the current methods we use to allocate and utilize resources are destructive to our common interests. If you are truly concerned about the welfare of people, you would investigate how things are done now and how they could be done better. Adhering to the sick mentality that produced our current circumstances is the kind of dangerous and destructive behavior that will harm everyone you say you care about.

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November 13, 2013, 11:32:58 AM
 #1642

I think almost all of us here hate socialism and corporatism, which is what we have now. To say that we have capitalism, anywhere in the world, is complete strawman.

Even pollution is due to corporatism, with the central power of government being taken advantage of by companies in order to grant themselves special privileges and immunities. For environmental issues, look at how companies lobbied the government to destroy the customary-law protections of tort law. So that, for example, you couldn't sue a coal factory upwind of you nearly as easily. Instead we have EPA regulations, even though it's obviously that lawsuits are far more effective. The state is what is destroying the environment, not companies. At least not companies in isolation. Without the state there'd be no way for them to protect themselves to such a degree.
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November 13, 2013, 12:38:26 PM
 #1643

I think almost all of us here hate socialism and corporatism, which is what we have now. To say that we have capitalism, anywhere in the world, is complete strawman.

Even pollution is due to corporatism, with the central power of government being taken advantage of by companies in order to grant themselves special privileges and immunities. For environmental issues, look at how companies lobbied the government to destroy the customary-law protections of tort law. So that, for example, you couldn't sue a coal factory upwind of you nearly as easily. Instead we have EPA regulations, even though it's obviously that lawsuits are far more effective. The state is what is destroying the environment, not companies. At least not companies in isolation. Without the state there'd be no way for them to protect themselves to such a degree.

Hating something means you don't understand it. Many people here clearly don't understand that the state is an extension of the dominant participants of the free market, so they blame evil governments which do exactly what their money interests want them to do. If you want to get rid of the state, get rid of money.

Dress To Kill reference.

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November 13, 2013, 03:01:56 PM
 #1644

Hating something means you don't understand it. Many people here clearly don't understand that the state is an extension of the dominant participants of the free market, so they blame evil governments which do exactly what their money interests want them to do. If you want to get rid of the state, get rid of money.

Once again, a choice.  Money abuses power, so you have two options.  Remove money, or remove power.  Removing power seems like the better choice to me (and most of us).

Recent history shows that it is possible to remove power, and that doing so leads to prosperity.  Even more recent history shows that removing money leads to genocide and murder.

Why do you continue to advocate for murder?

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November 13, 2013, 03:24:54 PM
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What struck me about Eric Li's speech was that he listed the stages off one by one, got to the bolded part with "individual sovereignty," and then suddenly took a sharp turn and veered off a cliff in the red part with "everyone voting in a democracy." The two are not the same thing, since the latter is essentially giving up your sovereignty, and decising whom you want to subjugate yourself to. I realized that Eric, and the Resource Based proponents here, all have the same mental block: they can't imagine anything beyond...

Pot kettle black?

Not so much. I understand that ZGM's claims can't work not because I am brainwashed into thinking that capitalism is right and socialism/government is wroong, but because it goes against basic human nature. On the other hand, Eric, and possibly the ZGMs, for some reason still want to give control over themselves to someone else, despite technological and cultural trends (guided by human nature) are taking us in a different direction.
However, if you were to claim that I am brainwashed about ZGM with a mental block of "Humans can't be convinced not to trade and freely give up the products of their labor for no compensation whatsoever" or "Resources are by definition limited, because we only have a limited amount of stuff, energy, and time," then yeah, feel free to say "pot kettle black."
What you say doesn't make sense. I didn't say anything about brainwashing - that was your idea. How about I put it like this:

The Libertarian ~ Anarcho-Capitalist story:
Sovereign individuals can freely trade with each other for resources. There are no artificial restrictions on things like prices or anything like that, so everyone charges as much as they can for everything because greed is good. Of course we don't have to worry about high prices like 1 million dollars for a litre of water because
a) supply will meet demand, resulting in the 'right' price where both sides are happy for the voluntary trade to occur, and
b) unhindered competition will kick in, forcing prices further down with increased efficiency due to technological progress.
c) The non-aggression principle lubricates the whole process until eventually: no government, or maybe just minimalist local authorities to tie up loose ends in rare outlier cases where the free market has trouble meeting some need.
Then: peace on Earth!

Except that that story has so many holes it's ridiculous:
a) yes, supply meets demand, but basic high-school economics also teaches us about elastic and inelastic supply and demand. If people want to use an economic theory to justify their political ideas, they can't just pick the bits they like. They must use the whole theory. Basically, anything that's essential for survival has inelastic demand, whereas luxury goods, i.e.: the optional ones, have elastic demand. The most negotiating power always lies on the side that has the most flexibility.
a1) "voluntary" is emotive propaganda used by the likes of Stefan Molyneux to make it sound like free trade is somehow morally superior to alternatives. (And he doesn't even discuss the issues, he diverts attention away from the problems of internal pressures that are built into each trade, and starts talking about about external violence instead, which is an unrelated topic.) Real trade occurs across a spectrum of situations:
  • At one extreme end, the buyer has practically all of their needs met (a la Maslow's hierarchy of needs), except for one last luxury item -- maybe another TV -- that will expand their horizons and nurture their creativity, allowing them to be fully content.
  • At another extreme, the buyer has some urgent need for survival, e.g.: life-saving surgery.
In the first case the trade is extremely voluntary for the buyer: it's a free-will decision for them. But it's more difficult for the supplier because their lives depend on making enough sales. Therefore: extremely cheap TVs.
In the second case, the buyer's negotiating position is extremely weak. It's not voluntary for them at all. Therefore, the service involving a just few hours of work from a few skilled artisans using relatively primitive tools is likely to be priced many times higher than a TV set, even though the TV set almost certainly cost more in terms of total resources. None of this can be blamed on governments interfering. It's just simple economics. Free trade can sometimes be evil and coercive and non-voluntary.

b) Competition can be very useful to drive evolution. But in terms of raw efficiency, it's probably far more efficient at any given moment for businesses to merge and gain economies of scale, rather than staying separate. But if there are no competitors, there's no risk of one of those competitors driving you out of business, so why waste so much effort innovating? Therefore the R&D budget gets cut. This has been discussed before: free markets trend toward monopolies. Monopolies get lazy and non-innovative. They also sometimes get weird psychoses from their controllers who are paranoid about losing their steady income stream.

c) Non-aggression principle is just crap. Sure it's a nice sentiment and everything, but if mankind could operate on a simplistic golden rule instead of chaotic systems of laws, then it surely would.


So, in summary, you're complaining about Eric Li's description of Democracy, but you seem to be doing so while standing behind some flavour of Libertarian story which has even more holes. Therefore: pot kettle black, and his advice applies to you too that you should work on improving your own system first.
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November 13, 2013, 03:49:36 PM
 #1646

Your continued assertions that I want to do terrible things to people, while hilarious, are ultimately indicative of an intellectually dishonest personality. If you want to see horrors on such a scale, you need only to look at what capitalism, which you admire so much, has done to the people and environment of the world.

All you have to do to refute this is to explain how you plan to convince people to have their resources controlled for them. We had this discussion a year ago, and it never really went past the point at which someone said "won't this system fall apart as soon as a few people decide they want to trade things instead?"

I don't have to convince anyone of anything. It is becoming increasingly apparent that the current methods we use to allocate and utilize resources are destructive to our common interests. If you are truly concerned about the welfare of people, you would investigate how things are done now and how they could be done better. Adhering to the sick mentality that produced our current circumstances is the kind of dangerous and destructive behavior that will harm everyone you say you care about.

So, is your answer, instead of allowing people to be free to do what they want, force them to do what someone else wants, and punish them if they don't obey?

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November 13, 2013, 03:54:04 PM
 #1647

get rid of money.

I don't know why we keep paying attention to this guy who advocates for the end of money and yet has an ad in his signature saying he's selling a motherboard.  Why the hell doesn't he give it away for free?

Anyway:  money is useful whenever people need to trade stuff.   Because money is much more efficient than barter, for very well known reasons that are probably not necessary to recall here.

So, do you think in your RBE fantasy people won't have any need to trade anything?  If so, then sure, money will be useless.  But I have very, very hard time imagining a society where I would not have to trade things (unless we're talking about going back to stone age, hunter-gatherer level).   If you can, then you probably have way too much imagination.   Or you're just completely delusional.

But above all:  if the utility of money must decrease, this should be translated into lower prices.  Ultimately, in a moneyless world, the price of things would be zero.   So I'll say it again:   just let the prices fell down to zero if that's what the economic reality wants.
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November 13, 2013, 04:29:54 PM
 #1648

Except that that story has so many holes it's ridiculous:
a) yes, supply meets demand, but basic high-school economics also teaches us about elastic and inelastic supply and demand. If people want to use an economic theory to justify their political ideas, they can't just pick the bits they like. They must use the whole theory. Basically, anything that's essential for survival has inelastic demand, whereas luxury goods, i.e.: the optional ones, have elastic demand. The most negotiating power always lies on the side that has the most flexibility.

Elasticity can not be manipulated by governments. A government can't make resources out of thin air, and can't reduce people's need for things through force. The only thing that can change elasticity is economic/technological progress. All government can do is force prices down by using everyone else's money, until either everyone runs out of money, or until the resource is depleted. Take oil for example. USA is taking shittons of money from people to keep oil prices down (which they do through taxation and massive military spending). As a result, USA is hugely in debt, oil is quickly running out, and we have barely scratched the surface on alternative energy and transportation. In the long run, goods that are inelastic have the highest incentive for competing alternatives and substitutes. If your competitor, using established technology, is severely affected by changes in supply, causing him to drastically raise prices any time there is even a small shortage (say, he's selling imported water in a desert region), then he is highly succeptible to any competitor that comes up with a more efficient alternative, which will kill his business instantly (for example, with a cheap reverse-osmosis filter that can extract water from any liquid, including human waste, and can be powered by wind). We have already seen this with food - another inelastic good - where farmers who could demand premiums for their produce were supplanted by industreal farming, which turned farm produce into a market taker (i.e. farmers are forced to take whatever is offered for their food, since anyone else can do what they do). University economics trumps your high-school economics Cheesy

Quote
a1) "voluntary" is emotive propaganda used by the likes of Stefan Molyneux to make it sound like free trade is somehow morally superior to alternatives. (And he doesn't even discuss the issues, he diverts attention away from the problems of internal pressures that are built into each trade, and starts talking about about external violence instead, which is an unrelated topic.)

...

In the second case [life-saving surgery], the buyer's negotiating position is extremely weak. It's not voluntary for them at all. Therefore, the service involving a just few hours of work from a few skilled artisans using relatively primitive tools is likely to be priced many times higher than a TV set, even though the TV set almost certainly cost more in terms of total resources. None of this can be blamed on governments interfering. It's just simple economics. Free trade can sometimes be evil and coercive and non-voluntary.

If you know high-school economics, you would know that the thing that is priced many times higher will attract many more people to pursue that business, and as more people enter the market, competition will drive prices down AND create many more choices, and thus negotiating power. The reason surgery is so much more expensive than TVs right now is pretty much government. Plus, again, look at the available options: Let economics decide, or force it to change. The only ways to forcefully resolve the issue of internal pressure, such as need for life-threatening surgery for the person who needs it, is for that person to steal the money or service (such as threaten the doctor's family if he doesn't do it for free), or to have a government steal from everyone else to pay for this surgery. But then you have TWO negative consequences. The first is that the surgeon has no reason to reduce prices, since everyone always gets paid what they ask for, and the second (which I believe is much worse) is that no one who needs this surgery feels the consequences of their lack of responsibility. Why should they bother to work harder (or better yet smarter), earn more, and save up for emergencies, if they will be taken care of every time an emergency comes up? Yes, in a voluntary society we will have people duying because they can't afford life-saving services, but they will be warnings for others about being responsible with your life, and be the people who were so irresponsible that their loss will not be important anyway. Anyone who is respoonsible and important enough will likely be able to raise money by borrowing or through charity.

Quote
b) Competition can be very useful to drive evolution. But in terms of raw efficiency, it's probably far more efficient at any given moment for businesses to merge and gain economies of scale, rather than staying separate. But if there are no competitors, there's no risk of one of those competitors driving you out of business, so why waste so much effort innovating? Therefore the R&D budget gets cut. This has been discussed before: free markets trend toward monopolies. Monopolies get lazy and non-innovative. They also sometimes get weird psychoses from their controllers who are paranoid about losing their steady income stream.

Sounds like high-school economics again. Monopolies are always short-lived, exactly for that reason. They get lazy and non-innovative, and ket killed off by much more flexible and faster newer innovators. For example, Kodak had a digital camera prototype I think in the 70's or 80's, but they scoffed at it because that wasn't their monopoly business (they were in photochemicals and film), and now Kodak is essentially dead. Microsoft, the biggest most powerful monopoly of the 90's and 2000's, is duying as PCs become less relevant. General Motors nearly got wiped out because they couldn't change and switch their business as fast as Toyota and Honda to accomodate changing tastes in cars (continuing to sell SUVs as gas prices went from $1.50 to $3.50). Let them merge and become more efficient. That's good for us, because their products will continue to be cheaper while they sell them, and because it'll be easier for innovators to take them out. And if they gouge prices due to monopoly power, all the more incentive for someone else to step in and kill them.

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c) Non-aggression principle is just crap. Sure it's a nice sentiment and everything, but if mankind could operate on a simplistic golden rule instead of chaotic systems of laws, then it surely would.

Non-aggression does not exclude a chaotic system of laws. It is simply the basis for those laws. It's the same laws that are being used now in civil courts, and in trans-national business law (a new body of law being developed by businesses independently of government, for use by corporations that do not have a specific country they are based out of). All non-aggression principle says, really, is that laws should not allow someone to take someone else's stuff "legally" and without recourse.

Quote
So, in summary, you're complaining about Eric Li's description of Democracy, but you seem to be doing so while standing behind some flavour of Libertarian story which has even more holes. Therefore: pot kettle black, and his advice applies to you too that you should work on improving your own system first.

My system is not perfect, and I am still exploring the possibilities. But it's not as full of holes as you'd like to believe. Plus my overall point was not who's system was full of flaws, but the weird quirk that despite mentioning "individual sovereignty," he still ended up being stuck in the mindset of "someone must control us." Just as ZGM/RBE proponents advocate for total freedom from needs and wants, while still promoting "someone must control us."

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November 13, 2013, 04:33:36 PM
 #1649

So, do you think in your RBE fantasy people won't have any need to trade anything?  If so, then sure, money will be useless.  But I have very, very hard time imagining a society where I would not have to trade things (unless we're talking about going back to stone age, hunter-gatherer level).   If you can, then you probably have way too much imagination.   Or you're just completely delusional.

In RBE (Resource Based Economy), robots will build and maintain other robots, resources will be unlimited (no idea how), and everyone will have everything done for them by robots. So the only thing people will have left to do is personal hobbies, and all progress will come from people just feeling like doing something, instead of being motivated by scarcity and competition.

Think the cruise ship on Wall-E, and the (un)impressive centuries of progress that happened on it.

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November 13, 2013, 06:18:21 PM
 #1650

Hating something means you don't understand it. Many people here clearly don't understand that the state is an extension of the dominant participants of the free market, so they blame evil governments which do exactly what their money interests want them to do. If you want to get rid of the state, get rid of money.

Once again, a choice.  Money abuses power, so you have two options.  Remove money, or remove power.  Removing power seems like the better choice to me (and most of us).

Recent history shows that it is possible to remove power, and that doing so leads to prosperity.  Even more recent history shows that removing money leads to genocide and murder.

Why do you continue to advocate for murder?

Capitalism has murdred more people than you're willing to admit.

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November 13, 2013, 06:32:46 PM
 #1651

Except that that story has so many holes it's ridiculous:
a) yes, supply meets demand, but basic high-school economics also teaches us about elastic and inelastic supply and demand. If people want to use an economic theory to justify their political ideas, they can't just pick the bits they like. They must use the whole theory. Basically, anything that's essential for survival has inelastic demand, whereas luxury goods, i.e.: the optional ones, have elastic demand. The most negotiating power always lies on the side that has the most flexibility.

Elasticity can not be manipulated by governments.
Maybe not.
Quote
A government can't make resources out of thin air,
Actually, some resources can be reorganised and redirected by governments. E.g.: hospitals can be built using taxpayer money. It's just that the insane bastards running the private health system in the US desperately don't want that to happen.

Quote
and can't reduce people's need for things through force.
See above.
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The only thing that can change elasticity is economic/technological progress. All government can do is force prices down by using everyone else's money, until either everyone runs out of money, or until the resource is depleted.
No, they could do lots of things. Directly regulating a price is pretty naive and just because the Russians did it, it doesn't mean that the only other way is free-market extremism:
-I already mentioned state competition, funded by taxpayer funds.
-really poorly performing industries could even be nationalised, with the basic idea of restructuring the upper management. For obvious reasons the managers would be absolutely mortified, so anything can happen, right down to lobbying government to do various crazy things to help out. So instead of taking over, the government does something idiotic like putting artificial limits on the available university places for that industry. Notice how that stops the threat of state competition?

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University economics trumps your high-school economics Cheesy
No, you didn't provide much in the way of new material, and nothing that debunked anything I said.
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November 13, 2013, 07:26:33 PM
 #1652

If you know high-school economics, you would know that the thing that is priced many times higher will attract many more people to pursue that business, and as more people enter the market, competition will drive prices down AND create many more choices, and thus negotiating power. The reason surgery is so much more expensive than TVs right now is pretty much government.
Yes -- prolonged government inaction and laissez-faire flexibility towards lobbying. That is the problem with US government, not a "strong hand" or too much of it as you're trying to suggest. It's as if the government did not exist. Hence the allegations of Fascism, Corporatism  and that the US really does have a free market because the government is part of that market. Sure, the government might be too real for you, but that just means you don't have enough money to lobby them in your favour.

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b) Competition can be very useful to drive evolution. But in terms of raw efficiency, it's probably far more efficient at any given moment for businesses to merge and gain economies of scale, rather than staying separate. But if there are no competitors, there's no risk of one of those competitors driving you out of business, so why waste so much effort innovating? Therefore the R&D budget gets cut. This has been discussed before: free markets trend toward monopolies. Monopolies get lazy and non-innovative. They also sometimes get weird psychoses from their controllers who are paranoid about losing their steady income stream.

Sounds like high-school economics again. Monopolies are always short-lived, exactly for that reason. They get lazy and non-innovative,
I don't know where you got the idea that they're short-lived. If there's competition, then it's not a monopoly. A monopoly in a laissez-faire Capitalist type system like the US basically can't die. For a monopoly to die, take your pick:
a) government kills it by introducing state competition. As is plainly obvious with the example of state health, you guys are really struggling with the propaganda being unleashed by vested interests who want to maintain the monopoly, about how everything is turning into evil socialism.
b) natural competition emerges. The means either: the market is less free and less laissez-faire than I thought because the government protected the competition against anticompetitive practices, and they rejected the lobbying.

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and ket killed off by much more flexible and faster newer innovators. For example, Kodak had a digital camera prototype I think in the 70's or 80's, but they scoffed at it because that wasn't their monopoly business (they were in photochemicals and film), and now Kodak is essentially dead.
Protectionist government probably intervened. How? E.g.: (to make up a fictional example) a brutal police force that saved Nikon/Minolta/whatever from getting their offices fire-bombed by mercenaries hired by Kodak. And don't tell me they wouldn't do that because of the kindness of their hearts. In a free market, there would be nothing stopping Kodak. In fact, the kindness of their hearts would tell them: "we must not let our children starve, even if it means fire-bombing the competition. They would do the same for their families. So fuck 'em." Cheesy

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General Motors nearly got wiped out because they couldn't change and switch their business as fast as Toyota and Honda to accomodate changing tastes in cars (continuing to sell SUVs as gas prices went from $1.50 to $3.50). Let them merge and become more efficient. That's good for us, because their products will continue to be cheaper while they sell them, and because it'll be easier for innovators to take them out. And if they gouge prices due to monopoly power, all the more incentive for someone else to step in and kill them.
Call it protectionism if you want, but really they lobbied too hard and again the laissez-faire government did what the industry wanted.
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November 13, 2013, 08:52:43 PM
 #1653

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A government can't make resources out of thin air,
Actually, some resources can be reorganised and redirected by governments. E.g.: hospitals can be built using taxpayer money. It's just that the insane bastards running the private health system in the US desperately don't want that to happen.

This doesn't create resources, it just redirects resources from where the market found them to be most efficient, to where government thinks they will be most efficient. It's too bad that those bastards who desperately don't want that to happen have government to protect them.

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The only thing that can change elasticity is economic/technological progress. All government can do is force prices down by using everyone else's money, until either everyone runs out of money, or until the resource is depleted.
No, they could do lots of things. Directly regulating a price is pretty naive and just because the Russians did it, it doesn't mean that the only other way is free-market extremism:
-I already mentioned state competition, funded by taxpayer funds.

Just redirecting funds from something more efficient to less efficient. If those state competition entities were efficient, they wouldn't need taxpayer funds to survive.

Quote
-really poorly performing industries could even be nationalised, with the basic idea of restructuring the upper management. For obvious reasons the managers would be absolutely mortified, so anything can happen, right down to lobbying government to do various crazy things to help out.

Besides the obvious problem of lobbying for crazy things, there's also the problem of nationalizing and continuing industries that have no business continuing. I'm glad the horse and buggy business wasn't nationalized and supported when cars came out, otherwise cars wouldn't have been able to compete, and we'd still drive in horse in buggies.

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So instead of taking over, the government does something idiotic like putting artificial limits on the available university places for that industry. Notice how that stops the threat of state competition?

Yep, government can do some pretty bad stuff with the economy. Wait, what were we talking about?

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November 13, 2013, 10:19:57 PM
 #1654

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The only thing that can change elasticity is economic/technological progress. All government can do is force prices down by using everyone else's money, until either everyone runs out of money, or until the resource is depleted.
No, they could do lots of things. Directly regulating a price is pretty naive and just because the Russians did it, it doesn't mean that the only other way is free-market extremism:
-I already mentioned state competition, funded by taxpayer funds.

Just redirecting funds from something more efficient to less efficient. If those state competition entities were efficient, they wouldn't need taxpayer funds to survive.
You have no evidence that the free market is always more efficient than an executive decision. In fact, companies themselves tend to have an authoritarian style with a strong downwards flow of executive decisions, and an upwards flow of feedback. Governments are just another layer in the fractal structure of society. That is human nature.
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November 13, 2013, 10:30:42 PM
 #1655

You have no evidence that the free market is always more efficient than an executive decision. In fact, companies themselves tend to have an authoritarian style with a strong downwards flow of executive decisions, and an upwards flow of feedback. Governments are just another layer in the fractal structure of society. That is human nature.

Regardless of how authoritarian internal company structure is, if the company is not efficient, it goes out of business. If a government entity is not efficient, it gets tax subsidy. The state organization I work for used to be completely self-sufficient, surviving on loan repayments and insurance premiums (our department works in housing and mortgages). After the crash of 2008, we have become about 80% dependent on government tax-based subsidy, and only 20% self sufficient. That tells me that this department has made terrible decisions regarding whom to lend, and at what lending rates. If this were a private company, it would have been dead long ago. What's worse, since the rates we had were so low, it meant that all other mortgage banks in the state had to either give similar competitive rates, or lose all their business to us. In the end, I suspect the tax subsidized irresponsibility of this department has forced other banks to be just as irresponsible, and has hurt many other businesses in the process.
Yes, there are some government entities that are more efficient, but they are very rare, since if the entity is efficient enough to exist on its own, it doesn't need to be a part of government, and government only needs to establish regulations it needs to follow. And yes, I understand that some government entities can work more efficiently as a government monopoly than as competing free-market entities (power companies is an often used example), but that brings back the issue of transfering efficiency from elsewhere, and stifling innovation by hiding the true cost of what is being offered (e.g. monopoly electricity may be using up resources that are causing massive negative externalities elsewhere, and is stifling competition from wind, solar, and other alternatives)

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November 13, 2013, 11:18:13 PM
 #1656

You have no evidence that the free market is always more efficient than an executive decision. In fact, companies themselves tend to have an authoritarian style with a strong downwards flow of executive decisions, and an upwards flow of feedback. Governments are just another layer in the fractal structure of society. That is human nature.

Regardless of how authoritarian internal company structure is, if the company is not efficient, it goes out of business. If a government entity is not efficient, it gets tax subsidy. The state organization I work for used to be completely self-sufficient, surviving on loan repayments and insurance premiums (our department works in housing and mortgages). After the crash of 2008, we have become about 80% dependent on government tax-based subsidy, and only 20% self sufficient. That tells me that this department has made terrible decisions regarding whom to lend, and at what lending rates.
Or... excellent decisions allowing someone to profit from government funds? Grin I'm not trying to defend government efficiency in principle. Far from it. I'm just suggesting that many of its 'executive' actions are probably not based on a profit motive in the first place (e.g.: as with public health where the whole point is to increase availability of health services, not profit. If you didn't know a certain health service was funded by government, and you saw it just when it first opened, you'd think "holy crap these new guys are really cheap! The others better start putting their prices down." If the demand is inelastic because it's something people actually need, then the country could still end up profiting as a whole, even if the state owned enterprise keeps making terrible losses.) From a meta perspective they already control tax and borrow money, so the rest is just trying to make sure it goes to the right places.... In theory anyway.
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November 14, 2013, 01:04:01 AM
 #1657

Capitalism has murdred more people than you're willing to admit.

Name one.

There have been some murders committed by practitioners of capitalism, but murder is not a necessary component of capitalism the way it is with your scheme.

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November 14, 2013, 02:41:55 AM
 #1658

Capitalism has murdred more people than you're willing to admit.

Name one.

There have been some murders committed by practitioners of capitalism, but murder is not a necessary component of capitalism the way it is with your scheme.

What murders must be committed when using the earth's resources for the benefit of all people? While I  maintain it is zero, it is infinitely fewer than the number necessary to maintain the inequality and growth demanded by capitalism.

Of course you shouldn't take my word for it. Adam Smith predicted this terrible outcome over 100 years ago:

Quote
But in civilised society it is only among the inferior ranks of people that the scantiness of subsistence can set limits to the further multiplication of the human species; and it can do so in no other way than by destroying a great part of the children which their fruitful marriages produce.

http://geolib.com/smith.adam/won1-08.html

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November 14, 2013, 03:28:40 AM
 #1659

What murders must be committed when using the earth's resources for the benefit of all people?

You'll kill people that don't agree with you about how resources should be used and/or allocated.

Or maybe you'll just kill them for watching smuggled TV programs

Fortunately, you're almost probably just a poor idiot whining for free money, so you're very likely harmless.
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November 14, 2013, 03:37:28 AM
 #1660

Capitalism has murdred more people than you're willing to admit.

Name one.

There have been some murders committed by practitioners of capitalism, but murder is not a necessary component of capitalism the way it is with your scheme.

Some RBE types consider a person starving, or dying from a disease they can't afford to treat, as "violence" or "murder" perpetrated by capitalism. Seriously.

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