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Beware. Socialism is Everywhere
Old 10-08-2007, 12:34 PM   #1
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Beware. Socialism is Everywhere

For those of you who think government-run anything is inherently bad. Here's an interesting look at a A day in the life
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Old 10-08-2007, 01:35 PM   #2
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But how can this be?! I'm a rugged individualist, Ayn Rand loving, libertarian American. I got where I am thanks to no one else, only my own grit and determination. I ask no other man to live for me and I don't want to live for any other man. I don't need no stinking government!

Communist propaganda like this has no place in decent society, thank you very much. Please take it away and don't confuse me with the facts.

Sincerely,

The new and improved Gumby

Better dead than Red!
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Old 10-08-2007, 01:43 PM   #3
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But how can this be?! I'm a rugged individualist, Ayn Rand loving, libertarian American. I got where I am thanks to no one else, only my own grit and determination. I ask no other man to live for me and I don't want to live for any other man. I don't need no stinking government!

Communist propaganda like this has no place in decent society, thank you very much. Please take it away and don't confuse me with the facts.

Sincerely,

The new and improved Gumby

Better dead than Red!
Ah. I understand. The opposite of government is anarchy. There are no possible intermediate stages. Our government is perfect and being made more perfect-er every day. Were it not for Republicrats i'd be a salmonella ridden property-less fool with dog poop on my shoes and a 20amp breaker blowing when i turn on my microwave. Living in an industrial loft.
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Old 10-08-2007, 01:48 PM   #4
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In 1967, I personally (and very sincerely) asked Paul Goodman at a get-together (at a friend's home after a talk he gave), how the utopian anarchy he envisioned would cope with some of these issues. His answer to me was pretty much that either private industry would fill in the gaps, or we could manage without. At that point, I realized that as much as I dislike excessive government, I am hopelessly incapable of espousing anarchy.

Some of my friends did not feel that way, but I suspect they were "enjoying" the 1960's a lot more than I was and that affected their reasoning.
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Old 10-08-2007, 02:19 PM   #5
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This guy Doug Amy is just trying to say the right things to get more dates with his ulta liberal Holyoke students. Chalk this essay up to sex.

Ha
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Old 10-08-2007, 02:42 PM   #6
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Up until I read this article I was one of those rugged individualistic types. But, now I see the light. I'm glad the government is there for me in so many ways. And better yet, they always get things done in the most efficient and cost effective manner.

I especially like that the FCC is there to not only organize our communication system but to protect me from offensive words and images. And just where would we be as a society if we didn't know the weather ahead of time? I love the government!
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Old 10-08-2007, 02:50 PM   #7
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And just where would we be as a society if we didn't know the weather ahead of time?
Getting killed in hurricanes because we wouldn't know that we should evacuate. Watching more space shuttles and satellites crash due to unexpected weather problems at the launch and recovery sites. Paying substantially more for food because farmers couldn't know when would be an optimal time to plant and harvest. Paying more for oil and imported goods because tankers and container ships don't have the information to avoid rough weather at sea. There are more, but you get the picture.

P.S. -- I agree with you on the FCC and obscenity (although if I had children who watch TV, I might think otherwise).
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Old 10-08-2007, 04:24 PM   #8
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I didn't see the part in the link about where the government takes your money to give to someone else they deem more qualified to what you worked for.
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Old 10-08-2007, 05:22 PM   #9
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Getting killed in hurricanes because we wouldn't know that we should evacuate. Watching more space shuttles and satellites crash due to unexpected weather problems at the launch and recovery sites. Paying substantially more for food because farmers couldn't know when would be an optimal time to plant and harvest. Paying more for oil and imported goods because tankers and container ships don't have the information to avoid rough weather at sea. There are more, but you get the picture.

P.S. -- I agree with you on the FCC and obscenity (although if I had children who watch TV, I might think otherwise).
Good points. There's a reason I was never on any debate teams.
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Old 10-08-2007, 08:29 PM   #10
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Well, that article was probably 10x better than I expected. But my expectations were low. What's the value of showing one side of an issue?

That is why I hate to listen to any of the hard right or hard left talkers.

Even so, and having Libertarian leanings myself, I agree that govt definitely fills a need. Occasionally, they even do a pretty good job of it, and they gave some good examples. But I don't want them doing anything that could be done as well, or better by the private sector.

And, a couple points I do take issue with:

Quote:
On a more practical level, the federal government actually gives you money every year to help pay for your house. It’s called a mortgage interest tax deduction ....

the $3,000 child care tax credit you get ...

Thanks to Medicare, her medical expenses are covered ...
If you take my money (taxes) to give it back to me (tax credits), you didn't 'give' it to me. It was MY money!


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5:00 p.m. You leave work—thanks to the government-mandated 40 hour workweek.



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Old 10-08-2007, 09:41 PM   #11
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But I don't want them doing anything that could be done as well, or better by the private sector.
-ERD50
I'm just curious. Do you think the private sector does a better job with health insurance?
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:53 PM   #12
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I'm just curious. Do you think the private sector does a better job with health insurance?
I think health insurance is a very complex situation, one that I have not yet invested sufficient time to fully from an opinion on.

I do realize that tying it to employment has caused problems. I think there must be better ways, just don't know what they are yet.

Someday, I will spend some more time on this, just have not been able to get my arms around this huge problem at this stage. I'm a bit suspicious of people who think they know the 'answer'.

Ahhh, I do recall something useful from a Science Friday podcast - Ira Flatow had a panel of health experts on. He was getting frustrated by all the complexities and finally blurted out something to the effect: 'Somebody must be doing it right! Can't we just copy someone? Who do we pick? Which country has the best system?' --- silence ---

Then some carefully couched phrases about choice, some people want this, some that, some systems are good in some ways but limit choice.....

It's a tough nut. -ERD50
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Old 10-08-2007, 09:57 PM   #13
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I especially like that the FCC is there to not only organize our communication system but to protect me from offensive words and images. And just where would we be as a society if we didn't know the weather ahead of time? I love the government!
I know what you mean! Awful institutions like Police departments, Fire stations, Libraries, Public schools... Oh the huge manatee!
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Old 10-09-2007, 12:00 AM   #14
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For those of you who think government-run anything is inherently bad.
I'm surprised no one has pointed out yet that if they're from the government, they're here to help.

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A web project of Douglas J. Amy, Professor of Politics at Mount Holyoke College
No such thing as bad publicity, but I think this sets a new low for "publish or perish".

If there was no govt, would we need political professors?
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Old 10-09-2007, 04:22 AM   #15
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What's the value of showing one side of an issue?
Well, I think it's just trying to be an antidote.. a little shot of penicillin in the current climate. If anything we are inundated with messages of how HORRIBLE the current admin. is (not entirely unjustly) along with more messages of how much MORE HORRIBLE the evil HRC or the 'madrassa-educated' Obama will make our lives. Many people are fighting tooth and nail and we have kind of overlooked "why". The point should be to make people's lives better, generally, although there are arguments about what 'better' entails.

I'm a liberal who thinks the gov't. IS too bloated.. and don't forget Reagan and Bush II have been far bigger gov't. spenders than any Democrat from all measures I've seen. I, for one, am angry that the government takes my money and instead of paying $500-$1000/week to a soldier pays $500-$1000/day to a private company like Blackwater, but that's just me, I guess. Privatization often does not mean either cheaper or more efficient. Privatization (in current R terms) usually means the gov. being the intermediary for steering public funds towards selected private enterprise, not getting out of the game altogether.

Good logical points tho' ERD50, on the 'credits' .. but I think probably left right and center think the mortage int. ded'n. does encourage stability overall.

I think it was in that Maxing Out movie where I saw a clip of that commie Dan Rather intoning seriously that that day (a momentous occasion) "America has become a debtor nation." Not sure of the date, but I wonder if people had a better idea back then of what was 'voodoo economics' and what wasn't.

Ha- pretty funny line about the sex.. Right-Wing Sis was edumacated at Mt. Holyoke and Wesleyan. Backlash? Whiplash? Motherhood? (She sends me links to Little Green Footballs, Free Republic, and Our Lady of the Concentration Camps, Michelle Malkin.)
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Old 10-09-2007, 09:54 AM   #16
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ERD50: What's the value of showing one side of an issue?

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Well, I think it's just trying to be an antidote.
Well, I can see it as a literary 'gimmick' to start the discussion rolling. But these things (from either side) generally turn into 'preaching to the choir'. It just seems to promote people 'taking sides'. I'm of the opinion that real progress can be made when people meet in the middle and discuss the relative merits of the issues and search out some middle ground, rather than simply defend their view of the issues.


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Many people are fighting tooth and nail and we have kind of overlooked "why". The point should be to make people's lives better, generally, although there are arguments about what 'better' entails.
A year or so ago, I heard Robert Reich on NPR. I had disagreed with his views the earlier times he had been on, but I thought he really captured this topic well. Interestingly, it was in reference to 'Corporate Welfare', but I think it applies generally (maybe he would disagree!). I need to para-phrase, but something like this:

The only time that the government should fund 'Corporate Welfare' (subsidies, incentives, research funding, etc) is when:


A) The funding supports something that enhances the general welfare of the citizenry...

and

B) Private enterprise cannot fill the need, because the 'barriers to entry' are too high for any single company, and/or a private company could not sufficiently profit from the end product to justify the investment.


I thought that was a clear-cut, logical and practical summary. And I think you can turn it around to government services. The govt should only get involved if those conditions are met. And there are plenty of them enough to keep our govt busy.

'Orphan drugs' are probably a good example. The free market guy in me says 'if there is demand, the market will fill it'. A part of me does not want to see people suffer, so maybe this is a good use of our tax dollars.

< geeezz I have trouble stopping>... but, as samclem pointed out in an earlier thread, if the govt allocates a billion $ to research that will help 100 people a year, but that billion $ could have gone to helping 10,000 people a year, it would be irresponsible not to go for the 'more bang for the back' use.

-ERD50
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:01 AM   #17
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I'm just curious. Do you think the private sector does a better job with health insurance?
YES............
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:16 AM   #18
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Some wise person once said "taxes are the price of civilized society".

Maybe so, but why does it have to cost SO MUCH!
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:26 AM   #19
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YES............
Care to expand on that? If you are an investor in insurance companies with medical loss ratios under 70%, then I can understand your answer. If I am someone who is trying to get health insurance in the individual market and can't because of preexisting conditions, I can't.
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Old 10-09-2007, 10:56 AM   #20
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Care to expand on that? If you are an investor in insurance companies with medical loss ratios under 70%, then I can understand your answer. If I am someone who is trying to get health insurance in the individual market and can't because of preexisting conditions, I can't.
I don't look at health insurance as something the government should run. Do you really trust the Congress to put in place a plan that would work? I know I don't.............
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