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Capitalists Seem Determined To Destroy Capitalism - Cecil Parkinson


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Problem is - for the retail situations in which this applies - a big company can always simply take a loss to drive a small upstart company out of business, if they can't just buy them out. You would require both a business owner who refuses any offer, and a large band of customers prepared to pay more for the same product purely to support a small businessman.

Which is awesome for the customer because it means lower prices.

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This theory on paper it works, however once you add humans into the mix you get monopolies.

That doesn't seem to be a critique unique to capitalism.

Any system sounds good on paper and fails once you put humans in the mix. Capitalism fails when people don't understand it like if a factory is losing money and may close then people yell for it to be bailed out. That's not capitalism, that's a failure to follow capitalism.

Not only does it work on paper there is also considerable evidence it works in real life too.

Oh and someone mentioned Bill Gates. He would NEVER have gotten as rich as he is if government hadn't have enforced copyright so vigorously in his favour.

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What about Bill Gates?

It is about self interest rather than wealth.

Bill Gates has essentially ensured that the future distribution of his wealth is very tax efficient, both from a capital gains and estate tax point of view.

His approach also ensures that the distribution of his wealth is in accordance with his wishes rather than at the whim of the state.

He is motivated by self interest within the framework of the rules rather than "pure" philanthropy.

Buffet is the same.

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A 'state' is the problem.

Pity then that 'states' are always inevitable (in one form or another).

Want to stop people from forming cartels/alliances...opps you'd need an alliance/cartel to do that.

Nowt wrong with cartels or alliances, they self implode when the prices get to high.

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Nowt wrong with cartels or alliances, they self implode when the prices get to high.

If there isn't anything else the cartels and alliances become the state. They may self implode in the end, just as states sometimes do, but all that means is another one turns up to replace them.

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If there isn't anything else the cartels and alliances become the state. They may self implode in the end, just as states sometimes do, but all that means is another one turns up to replace them.

No, a state is a monopoly of violence in a given geographically defined area.

A couple of blokes deciding to put their prices up together isn't even vaguely the same.

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If there isn't anything else the cartels and alliances become the state. They may self implode in the end, just as states sometimes do, but all that means is another one turns up to replace them.

Entropy And The Laws Of Economics : All systems continue to try to break themselves apart and all equilibria are only temporary.

Some seem to have the view that we can reach perfection and that perfection will then be stable for eternity.

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Entropy And The Laws Of Economics : All systems continue to try to break themselves apart and all equilibria are only temporary.

Some seem to have the view that we can reach perfection and that perfection will then be stable for eternity.

I think a more effective plan is to have in your mind what your perfection is. But then in a pragmatic way see what is possible in the here and now.

For example one belief I have is the abolition of all regulations and laws around drug use, legal and illegal drugs. However I realize that is too far out there for the society today. Luckily some movement towards my position is popular in the society. Such as decriminalizing marijuana. And expanding the number of people allowed to perscribe various classes of medications.

So you have a movement that in an opportunist pragmatic fashion works towards the end goal, depending on what is possible in the here and now.

Likewise I believe in the removal of most planning restrictions. Ok that is too far out there for the moment, but now there is serious debate on opening up the green belt, and the Tories just mentioned selling off many brownsite government sites for development.

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I think a more effective plan is to have in your mind what your perfection is. But then in a pragmatic way see what is possible in the here and now.

For example one belief I have is the abolition of all regulations and laws around drug use, legal and illegal drugs. However I realize that is too far out there for the society today. Luckily some movement towards my position is popular in the society. Such as decriminalizing marijuana. And expanding the number of people allowed to perscribe various classes of medications.

So you have a movement that in an opportunist pragmatic fashion works towards the end goal, depending on what is possible in the here and now.

Likewise I believe in the removal of most planning restrictions. Ok that is too far out there for the moment, but now there is serious debate on opening up the green belt, and the Tories just mentioned selling off many brownsite government sites for development.

I agree completely. Progress is very rarely a discontinuous function.

I do like the extremes of social and political thought though. Fringe groups hoping for a binary outcome help define the acceptable, pragmatic outcomes that the majority of people can accept.

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I agree completely. Progress is very rarely a discontinuous function.

I do like the extremes of social and political thought though. Fringe groups hoping for a binary outcome help define the acceptable, pragmatic outcomes that the majority of people can accept.

Which assumes that peoples acceptance is the main thing needed to make stuff work.

A very democratic mindset, but is it accurate?

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Which assumes that peoples acceptance is the main thing needed to make stuff work.

A very democratic mindset, but is it accurate?

I would hope so.

All that we need to prove the thesis is to find a democracy.

Switzerland is possibly the least worst fit and it does seem to work reasonably well. I like their "rule" that no law can be passed which creates more rights than responsibilities.

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I would hope so.

Can mass opinion create wealth, or does real world work have to be performed?

All that we need to prove the thesis is to find a democracy.

or to disprove it, find mass opinions which are false and don't work.

Can you think of any?

Switzerland is possibly the least worst fit and it does seem to work reasonably well. I like their "rule" that no law can be passed which creates more rights than responsibilities.

Illogical.

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Can mass opinion create wealth, or does real world work have to be performed?

or to disprove it, find mass opinions which are false and don't work.

Can you think of any?

Illogical.

Consensual real work creates wealth.

The level of mutual consent is probably highest in Switzerland which seems to work quite well.

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Election results that throw out an unpopular government - presumably there's a mass opinion that the new one will be different.

Yes, exactly.

huge swathes of the population in certain areas have been convinced that a religious/nazi/communist/whatever dictator will bring wealth from heaven, that kind of thing.

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  • 2 months later...

Doesn't really address the problem though. No state is required to destabalise the free market- it contains the seed of it's own destruction

Correct, maintaining a free market is hard work and requires constant vigilance. A free market is a deeply unnatural state of affairs.

In any system where self interest is the driver, that same self interest will eventually lead to gaming of that system by those most skilled in manipualting it, or gain the most power over it.
Self interest is always the driver, it has been throughout human history in free market economies, communistic economies mercantilist economies etc. I cant think of any society where the greatest driving force behind people's actions has not been self interest.
There seems to be this rather starry eyed view that all agents operating in a free market are somehow in favour of a free market- is that really true?

The truth is it's only the weak who favour free markets- the strong have something else in mind- they seek to dominate- they want monopoly.

absolutely true. That is why ensuring that competition is maintained is the most effective antidote to monopolies since monopolies are inherently inefficien and unconcerned by their customers. Ultimately the point of a free market is that it makes it impossible to accumulate wealth unless you do things that other people want you to. They express their approval of what you do by paying you to do it. Established interests will try their hardest to get money by any other means possible. Given that government is the only source of easily extorted money in our country, they flock to the centre of power.

the solution is to restrict the power of government - and they will go elsewhere, or concentrate on convincing others to give them their money in return for goods and services.

So the last thing these agents want is to compete with their rivals- what they want to is destroy their rivals- take them out. And in order to do that they will leverage their market power by doing what Tesco did to the high street.
Tesco is simply better than many of the shops that were crap. If they were better it doesn't matter what Tesco does as consumers wont reward them by shopping there. That is the crucial part of the free market the consumer can choose where to go and nobody forces them to go anywhere. So they go where they think is best.
So even if no state were on hand to do their bidding the outcome would be the same- the successful would destroy their competitors- even if this meant the kind of anti-competitive practices we see now like dumping, price fixing, limit pricing etc. All manner of collusion and skuduggery can take place at purely commercial level that require no state violence to implement- and indeed many of these practices would flourish in the absence of the state oversight we currently have.

they do this anyway, the state is powerless to prevent it. the important question to ask is why are any of these things a problem? More competition deals with them, not government rules and regulations.

Dumping? - the consumer can buy goods for a lower price so a good result. It costs the business money to dump and the consumer pockets that money.

fixing prices? In practice this happens anyway, but fix them too high and your customers go elsewhere. More competition makes it harder to make everyone fix their prices and more lucrative not to fix your own. Problem solved.

What the somewhat romantic advocates of free markets seem to overlook is that the last thing a successful player wants is a free market- the moment they gain the advantage they will seek to undermine that free market to enhance their dominance - an outcome entirely consistent with their own self interest.

yep, a free market is driven by self interest, but the FREE part is important. the freedom is that of the individual to choose who gets their money without being coerced in any way.

to do this you have to avoid concentrations of political power and force. And monopoly on force (government) has to be strictly limited or you end up with the special interest mess we have now. This is because those interests can use the government to force people to pay them through taxes.

The greatest human miseries in history have been created by concentrations of power, and letting people do as they please without physically harming each other has led to humanity lifting itself out of poverty for the first time in history. I know which one I want more of.

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