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Capitalism And Socialism

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We hear a lot lately about how the west can no longer afford it's social welfare systems which may be true. But along with the barely concealed glee of many at this new reality there is also the idea that, freed of the dead weight of their social programmes the western economies will soar like the capitalist eagles they deep down truly are.

I think this is wrong and firstly wish to enter in evidence exhibit A - a paragraph on the Chinese healthcare system;

If you get sick, you must have cash or you die if you cannot pay immediately for care, for hospital, for medicine. You are literally wheeled out into the corridor to die if you don't have money for oxygen. I am not exaggerating.

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/07/ponzi-shark-loans-fuel-chinas-housing.html

My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above. The willingness of the western consumer to spend was a reflection of their basic sense of security and well being based on the belief that in extremis the state would ride to rescue.

This, of course, is a massive moral hazard since it encourages people not to make provision for themselves and to behave like...well... consumers. But it's precisely this behaviour that our economy needs in order to function, and the reason is very simple- most people's jobs do not involve the supply of essential services or products- most people's jobs involve the supply of 'long tail' frippery that, in truth, are not essential in any way- our shopping malls are packed to the gills with stuff that most people don't really need in the first place.

So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

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We hear a lot lately about how the west can no longer afford it's social welfare systems which may be true. But along with the barely concealed glee of many at this new reality there is also the idea that, freed of the dead weight of their social programmes the western economies will soar like the capitalist eagles they deep down truly are.

I think this is wrong and firstly wish to enter in evidence exhibit A - a paragraph on the Chinese healthcare system;

http://globaleconomi...as-housing.html

My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above. The willingness of the western consumer to spend was a reflection of their basic sense of security and well being based on the belief that in extremis the state would ride to rescue.

This, of course, is a massive moral hazard since it encourages people not to make provision for themselves and to behave like...well... consumers. But it's precisely this behaviour that our economy needs in order to function, and the reason is very simple- most people's jobs do not involve the supply of essential services or products- most people's jobs involve the supply of 'long tail' frippery that, in truth, are not essential in any way- our shopping malls are packed to the gills with stuff that most people don't really need in the first place.

So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

Nice post. I disagree with the part I've made bold. People are making provisions for themselves by contributing (in the case of health) to the National Insurance Scheme. A large percentage of your salary goes toward this. It's compulsory insurance, and because of economies of scale, it should be the most efficient way to ensure the most people are taken care of. The NHS is not free.... you pay for it.

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My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above.

But friendly societies provided such welfare before the NHS and dole, at a much lower cost.

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But friendly societies provided such welfare before the NHS and dole, at a much lower cost.

Mark, what are the "friendly societies" (please don't ask me to google!)? Are you talking about Co-Operatives?

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What the UK has now and has been under for the past 13 years is a horrible form of populism, Labour stayed in power for the past 13 years by pandering shamelessly to its client group of those on benefits and in the public sector, this group now form such a large part of society that it will be very difficult to dislodge them from power for any period of time or make very difficult to form a majority government with policies that make any inroads into the "entitlements" of this group, the politics of populism are such that you max out all possible avenues of borrowing to fund the client groups, the future does not matter as whenever a prudent group is elected and tries to rein in the excess they can be branded as evil for the short period they will be in power , the socialist/populist group uses the Keynsian justification of stimulus as its mantra to keep overspending through boom and bust.

It really is like running the country by an X factor type system, what matters is the instant gratification of having it now and get the lowest common denominator of the population to keep you in power.

Asia on the other hand has many countries ( china HK singapore taiwan Korea etc ) on a different trajectory with an elite in power who put the economy first over the gratification of thier citizens, none of these countries have unemployment benefits as an entitlement its up to you to save and support your family in hard times, any stimulus required ( which is now being withdrawn fast ) has been in the form of building out world class infrastructure rather than issuing cash to those that put nothing by in the good times. it isn't democracy but do you expect turkeys to vote for Christmas.

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Guest Noodle

Can we have a new non-politics? Let's call it pragmatism or practicalism (possibly a new word).

A = B = C, X,Y,Z.

Or will the world continue to be dominated by angry spoilt children and/or greedy degenerate spivs?

Not 100% sure what I'm on about here . . . feeling around for a new concept.

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We hear a lot lately about how the west can no longer afford it's social welfare systems which may be true. But along with the barely concealed glee of many at this new reality there is also the idea that, freed of the dead weight of their social programmes the western economies will soar like the capitalist eagles they deep down truly are.

I think this is wrong and firstly wish to enter in evidence exhibit A - a paragraph on the Chinese healthcare system;

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/07/ponzi-shark-loans-fuel-chinas-housing.html

My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above. The willingness of the western consumer to spend was a reflection of their basic sense of security and well being based on the belief that in extremis the state would ride to rescue.

This, of course, is a massive moral hazard since it encourages people not to make provision for themselves and to behave like...well... consumers. But it's precisely this behaviour that our economy needs in order to function, and the reason is very simple- most people's jobs do not involve the supply of essential services or products- most people's jobs involve the supply of 'long tail' frippery that, in truth, are not essential in any way- our shopping malls are packed to the gills with stuff that most people don't really need in the first place.

So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

Soclialists steal to provide their end of this "deal."

The reason that the "safety systems" are no longer viable is that the ability of the socialists to steal is tapped out.

You might thnk the system is needed. You might be right.

It doesn't matter, it's over.

Edited by Injin

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Adam Smith had the wisdom to see the state has its part to play.

The enlightened self-interest of a collection of individuals is very good - up to a point.

Beyond that point one needs society and a bit of socialism and isn't it called a "mixed economy"?

I think the trick is to keep the socialism bit on the smallish side but it is needed because bankers don't understand hospitals.

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Adam Smith had the wisdom to see the state has its part to play.

The enlightened self-interest of a collection of individuals is very good - up to a point.

Beyond that point one needs society and a bit of socialism and isn't it called a "mixed economy"?

I think the trick is to keep the socialism bit on the smallish side but it is needed because bankers don't understand hospitals.

there is no middle ground we either have freedom or servitude - you may think its ok to have a bit of theft but it just grows until the money runs out and then it collapses.

the social safety net is a con. The elite do very well out of socialism but the average worker doesnt.

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Well I think Adam Smith's opinion is more persuasive than mine.

And even though this social thing makes its mistakes and brings its problems with it I for one do not want to live in a laissez faire environment where children work down mines and mills are accurately described as "dark and satanic", which was the case in the UK what ..... 150 years ago?

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The principles of socialism are benign: that we have a welfare state that ensures there is a minimum level of wellbeing that is the entitlement of every citizen. A level of deprivation and suffering that we won't tolerate. I think this held good until quite recently in Great Britain and there was a political consensus, even with Thatcher as PM, that said it was right that the strongest in society should do their bit in protecting the weak.

What has changed over the past 10 years is that the aims of this benign intervention have become more grandiose and less focussed resulting in attempts to provide unaffordable social interventions.

As far as health is concerned, no one wants to see patients left to die of a preventable condition because they can't pay, but neither is it viable to offer breast augmentation to all dysfunctional teenagers and IVF to anyone who has trouble conceiving. There need to be limits, and OK, some people will whinge, but as a society we need to define and limit the function of public spending. However the intent of these interventions is essentially benign, although probably not affordable. Note that the effect of such interventions may not be so benign as the intent, as they errode a sense of personal responsibilty and create a society of citizens with a sense of passive entitlement.

What we have seen in the last 2-3 years however is the rise of what I would term malevolence in State intervention. The outrage of 2008-2009 is that public money was abused in order to support those with property wealth as a class intervention. The rich BTL landlord benefitted more than the family struggling to pay a mortgage on their 2 bed terrace. The bankers benefitted most of all. In my lifetime, this sort of social intervention on behalf of a specific class of investor using public money is unprecedented, and the scale (what is it, 1.3 trillion?) beyond comprehension. The aim of this public spending was simply to drive up rents and property prices by using public money. The newspapers have railed against some of the pawns in the game, like the Somalian assylum seeker living in the 2miilion Chelsea mansion at council expense. However people like this are just incidental beneficiaries of a State funded plan to rig the market. The real winners are the bankers and those with large property portfolios. The unlikely engineers of the outrage seem to be the New Labour political leadership of Blair and Brown. Of course the victims are easy to identify.......the working, tax-paying, priced out generation in rented flats, who are paying tax to subsidize high house prices, unaffordable rents and increasing inflation. It is an odd kind of Socialism.

Edited by ingermany

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We hear a lot lately about how the west can no longer afford it's social welfare systems which may be true. But along with the barely concealed glee of many at this new reality there is also the idea that, freed of the dead weight of their social programmes the western economies will soar like the capitalist eagles they deep down truly are.

I think this is wrong and firstly wish to enter in evidence exhibit A - a paragraph on the Chinese healthcare system;

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/07/ponzi-shark-loans-fuel-chinas-housing.html

My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above. The willingness of the western consumer to spend was a reflection of their basic sense of security and well being based on the belief that in extremis the state would ride to rescue.

This, of course, is a massive moral hazard since it encourages people not to make provision for themselves and to behave like...well... consumers. But it's precisely this behaviour that our economy needs in order to function, and the reason is very simple- most people's jobs do not involve the supply of essential services or products- most people's jobs involve the supply of 'long tail' frippery that, in truth, are not essential in any way- our shopping malls are packed to the gills with stuff that most people don't really need in the first place.

So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

What about the US?

The US is probably as capitalist as any country (if not moreso), but its social welfare system isn't similarly 'advanced'.

Surely, no one buys consumerist junk more than they do?

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What about the US?

The US is probably as capitalist as any country (if not moreso), but its social welfare system isn't similarly 'advanced'.

Surely, no one buys consumerist junk more than they do?

it has the largest, most powerful state in history.

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Like all living things there must be some balance between input and output - its that simple.

The clients outnumber the taxpayers, we borrow for a bit and then its end-game.

What's complicated about that?

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it has the largest, most powerful state in history.

Socialism = Malinvestment,

a bit of Socialism= a bit of malinvestment,

We have massive malinvestment = purgation=recession or depression.

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Socialism = Malinvestment,

a bit of Socialism= a bit of malinvestment,

We have massive malinvestment = purgation=recession or depression.

Tp be fair, the problem is not merely socialism, it's statism.

Socialism is just a subset of the idea that it's okay or workable in the longterm to use the state to get stuff done.

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We hear a lot lately about how the west can no longer afford it's social welfare systems which may be true. But along with the barely concealed glee of many at this new reality there is also the idea that, freed of the dead weight of their social programmes the western economies will soar like the capitalist eagles they deep down truly are.

I think this is wrong and firstly wish to enter in evidence exhibit A - a paragraph on the Chinese healthcare system;

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/07/ponzi-shark-loans-fuel-chinas-housing.html

My argument is simple- far from being a drag on the 'consumer society' the social welfare programmes of the west have in fact made it possible by freeing people from the kind of situation described above. The willingness of the western consumer to spend was a reflection of their basic sense of security and well being based on the belief that in extremis the state would ride to rescue.

This, of course, is a massive moral hazard since it encourages people not to make provision for themselves and to behave like...well... consumers. But it's precisely this behaviour that our economy needs in order to function, and the reason is very simple- most people's jobs do not involve the supply of essential services or products- most people's jobs involve the supply of 'long tail' frippery that, in truth, are not essential in any way- our shopping malls are packed to the gills with stuff that most people don't really need in the first place.

So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

Your main argument that security = freedom to spend rather than save is probably valid but, assuming that increased consumer spending is neccessary achieve economic growth within a capitalist system is flawed. Surely that scenario represents where economies such as the UK have gone wrong? Less consumer growth with the shortfall being made up by making and selling stuff producing real earnings is surely better than everyone providing services to each other that gives the illusion of producing real earnings but is in reality just recycling the same earnings. In summary then, a bit less security through lower provision of public services may create the circumstances where people save more and spend less but that IMO is no bad thing especially if it is accompanied by the mindset that says the money I need to save and provide for my future cannot be taken for granted and I have to find a way to create stuff that will get me what I need.

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Tp be fair, the problem is not merely socialism, it's statism.

Socialism is just a subset of the idea that it's okay or workable in the longterm to use the state to get stuff done.

they have been quite good at getting people to believe that if you dont believe in the welfare state then you are an evil uncaring nasty. When the evil and uncaring nasty ones are running the show

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Guest sillybear2

Your view is a bit simplistic, before state run social welfare programmes there were private insurance or union based schemes, people weren't just left out of the City gates to die, of course medical science wasn't quite so advanced back then so there wasn't a lot that could be done in many cases, but that wasn't for the want of money. If there's a demand for something, and people not wanting to die is a pretty fundamental demand, then it will happen regardless of how you fund it, obviously private systems bring up the question of equality and equal access, but that's a separate ethical issue.

Our system was originally based on the pre-existing private schemes, that's why it's called "national insurance" and you make "contributions", the idea was to bring about economies of scale and equal access. Obviously these distinctions have been lost over time as no money is hypothecated, and your 'entitlements' aren't really related to your contributions.

A well run employee funded public health service can be a huge competitive advantage if done well, one of the reasons firms in the US aren't hiring or are only creating McJobs is due to the unaffordability of private medical cover.

Edited by sillybear2

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What about the US?

The US is probably as capitalist as any country (if not moreso), but its social welfare system isn't similarly 'advanced'.

Surely, no one buys consumerist junk more than they do?

The US has a welfare system that includes emergency medical treatments, unemployment benefits, free healthcare for the old and state pensions. And until recently very low savings rates.

The question is, if you took all that away, would the current model of a 'consumer' society be viable? Would people who knew that they were 'on their own' when it came to health, unemployemnt and old age be willing or able to play the consummerist game?

The problem is that the 'junk' you refer to is the modern economy to a large degree- it's what keeps most people employed. So if the idea that by dumping the welfare state you would unleash a mighty rush of 'pent up demand' for that junk is flawed, the outcome of a purely market driven setup would be to throttle demand for junk as everyone saved their money for a rainy day.

So the irony is that the red in tooth and claw capitalists need the socialists to create the social habitat in which their junk can find a market. If they succeed in their aim of dismantling the social protections they will all go bust as demand for junk fails.

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Guest sillybear2

The US has a welfare system that includes emergency medical treatments, unemployment benefits, free healthcare for the old and state pensions. And until recently very low savings rates.

The question is, if you took all that away, would the current model of a 'consumer' society be viable? Would people who knew that they were 'on their own' when it came to health, unemployemnt and old age be willing or able to play the consummerist game?

The US has lower taxes so in theory that should allow people to build up surpluses or rainy day funds, say the government left an extra $3k in your pocket over the last 30 years then a $50k medical bill doesn't look quite so bad, you can self-insure. But of course there's the real world, in most cases people would have used that extra money over the years to over-consume and disregard future risks, the marketing men convince people that a holiday, bigger house or new SUV today is worth more than financial security tomorrow. Neoliberalism's inherent short-termism and moral hazard will be its downfall.

If you want an example of "you're on your own buddy" then just look to China, that's why they save like crazy because their "communist" government provides few universal benefits or medical cover, people expect nothing and act accordingly.

Wonderpup, you assume that red in tooth and claw capitalists care about the universal good, in reality they would be quite happy to see neo-feudalism reign supreme if the safety net collapsed, you would have people on the breadline building Rolls Royces and servicing the rich, and there would be just enough private charity and a huge security apparatus to quell any unrest. Even though I don't admire socialism's inherent call for equal reward for unequal effort ("from each according to his ability, to each according to his need") there are certain admirable utilitarianism aspects, we should try and raise everyone up as high as possible via advancements in productivity and innovation, even if that means some people become extremely rich.

Edited by sillybear2

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Guest Noodle

The US has a welfare system that includes emergency medical treatments, unemployment benefits, free healthcare for the old and state pensions. And until recently very low savings rates.

The question is, if you took all that away, would the current model of a 'consumer' society be viable? Would people who knew that they were 'on their own' when it came to health, unemployemnt and old age be willing or able to play the consummerist game?

The problem is that the 'junk' you refer to is the modern economy to a large degree- it's what keeps most people employed. So if the idea that by dumping the welfare state you would unleash a mighty rush of 'pent up demand' for that junk is flawed, the outcome of a purely market driven setup would be to throttle demand for junk as everyone saved their money for a rainy day.

So the irony is that the red in tooth and claw capitalists need the socialists to create the social habitat in which their junk can find a market. If they succeed in their aim of dismantling the social protections they will all go bust as demand for junk fails.

Lot of noise on here about public sector pensions in the UK. Try the US. A mate from NY retired from the police (he was a vice cop in East Brooklyn) when he was 40. The pension, $2500 a month, began paying out not when he's 65 . . . but right away. Yes, they keep paying from the day they leave.

It's why they have printing presses and tungsten bars painted yellow.

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So the reality is that Capitalism and Socialism are not opposing ideologies at all, they are two sides of the same coin- interdependent. The Socialists need the Capitalists to make the money, the Capitalists need the Socialists to create the social environment where people feel safe to spend rather than hoard against the future.

If the safety net is pulled away and the money given back as tax cuts the result will not be an economic revival, it will be a contraction as people take that money and hoard it in case they get ill, or unemployed or old.

In the contest between greed and fear, fear tends to win.

So the apparent war between Capitalism and Socialism is at root an illusion- each needs the other and both exist as a symbiosis- neither one could really function on it's own- pure Capitalism would create a world too harsh to allow such exotics as 'consumers' to evolve, while Socialism, as has been said, would eventually run out of other people's money.

Interesting you say this.

There was a thread a few weeks back that asked a question like: so what is capitalism's answer to this then? And the context of the question was posed with the notion that capitalism didn't have the answers whereas socialism did.

I thought that was very telling at the time, as I suspect late capitalism's answers to many social and cultural issues created by late industrial capitalism was, in fact, socialism itself. Our understood notions of capitalism and socialism are, in fact, part of the same economic and cultural phenomenon of "meta-capitalism" (for want of a better term). They are like the ying and yang of the same socio-economic ontological system. A lot of the socialistic "answers" to late capitalism come from within the system itself, rather than from without it -- to refine the point, look at Marx and Engels. Engels was a industrial capitalist's son, and his father's money bankrolled a lot of their work.

To try and explain what I mean: it's like two teams playing a game of football. They are on opposing sides on the field, they are in constant battle and flux vis a vis the ball with spectators cheering on and supporting each side (sometimes to the point of violence), but, at the end of the day, when you stand outside of the stadium, they are still playing a game of football -- rather than, say, doing intrepretative dance.

In many ways, you can see the welfare state as an 19th century industrial capitalist's wet dream -- because the welfare state reduces the burden or threat of the socio-economic and medical liabilities of your workers upon your capital investment and enterprise. No longer do you need to pay your workers enough to cover their living costs and medical expenses. The state picks up the tab for the medical expenses through scooping it from taxation across the whole of income earners, thus reducing the direct burden upon you, and you get a stream of fairly healthy workers wihout having to pay a premium. Likewise with unemployment benefit, you are no longer faced with wage demands that take into account the need for workers to privately save for insurance against unemployment or old age, the state now picks up that tab through taxation on the workers themselves.

You can see the welfare state as another extension of the idea of privatising profits and socialising losses or liabilities. The welfare state relieves capitalists (industrialists is probably a better word here) from paying for the true cost of their workforce. Instead, that burden has been partially redirected to fall upon the workers themselves through taxation on their incomes.

You can see elements of this playing out across a range of social issues. Once upon a time, back in the 19th century, if you wanted a healthy workforce in a particular place, an industrialist or land owner had to build houses and amenities for them (check out Titus Salt for an example of this), now that housing burden falls upon either the worker or the state (funded largely from taxation of the workers).

And we wonder why the rich are getting richer.

The only way to redress this problem within our current system would be to remove nearly 80 percent of all income earners from taxation and demand higher taxes from the top 20. But in our globalised world, with the legacy of welfare structures and expectations people now have, this would just result in an utter collapse of the country.

The other fascinating thing is to look at the origins of the welfare state. The problems we face today as regards the cost of state provided welfare and our inability to pay for it were baked in the cake back when Lloyd George began wth his compulsory state insurance; it was always understood that the state would need to subsidise these funds, which was kinda fine when we had an empire and stood on an industrial monolith, and the wealthy couldn't globalise their entire existences, but was always going to create problems when all that economic stability and wealth collapsed. And his National Health Insurance proposals? Woah, did everyone from socialists to trade unionists to friendly societies to doctors hate that one -- issues about state administration of these types of programmes were argued about back then.

Incidentally, it is quite interesting to just how the explosion of state spend, in fact, began under Lloyd George and has advanced ever upwards.

Disclaimer: I am not arguing against mass social provision here, but just trying to make a point about how there has never been a viable debate about who and where the money to pay for it all should actually come from.

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Guest sillybear2

I thought that was very telling at the time, as I suspect late capitalism's answers to many social and cultural issues created by late industrial capitalism was, in fact, socialism itself. Our understood notions of capitalism and socialism are, in fact, part of the same economic and cultural phenomenon of "meta-capitalism" (for want of a better term). They are like the ying and yang of the same socio-economic ontological system. A lot of the socialistic "answers" to late capitalism come from within the system itself, rather than from without it -- to refine the point, look at Marx and Engels. Engels was a industrial capitalist's son, and his father's money bankrolled a lot of their work.

It's called the "political economy".

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  • 150 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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