Results 1 to 26 of 26

Thread: US is an oligarchy rather than a democracy

  1. #1
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default US is an oligarchy rather than a democracy

    A peer-reviewed Princeton study concludes that the US is more of an oligarchy than a democracy. They reviewed the political inclinations of the super rich and the average person and came to the conclusion that the average voters opinion barely matters while the ultra rich get their way. The elites comes mostly from areas like banking, finance and military.

    @hkkmr and others have promoted a democratic state as a means to fight the "corporate" power (ironically, corporations cannot exist without the state by definition). I bet they are now crying for more regulation towards private sector without realizing that it is just like asking a goat to guard the cabbages.

    To me, this is no news. While I think US is having it worst among the Western democracies, that country will not be a sole exception. EU is already following it's steps, if it's not by it's side already.

    Ask yourself what would the Founding Fathers do and you get a pretty good picture of where I am coming from.

    Hint: The answer is not "Vote the other lizard"
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  2. #2
    xerx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    5,466
    Mentioned
    53 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    in other news, water is wet. if Iran was more liberal, their level of democracy would be indistinguishable from the US'.
    You can do anything with a bayonet except sit on it.

  3. #3
    Banned
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    2,934
    Mentioned
    80 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    A shift to communism is needed anyway.

  4. #4
    lump's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    TIM
    Fi/Te 641 sp/sx
    Posts
    12,613
    Mentioned
    632 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    no shit

  5. #5
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    Nothing unprecedented here of course. This sort of evolution had already been described by ancient Greek political philosophers and others thousands of years before as a natural consequence of democratic states.
    Give me a good source for this and I'll get to link the shit out of it to.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  6. #6
    Robot Assassin Pa3s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Germany
    TIM
    Ne-LII, 5w6
    Posts
    3,648
    Mentioned
    46 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    While I still see an anarcho-communist society as an ideal, I've recently recognized the system's demanding nature. In order to work, the people need to be actively involved in the various instances of the self-administration. And I'm not sure that the majority of the people is either willing or capable of coping with this task.

    However, I believe that a decentralized state with a democratized economic sector (e.g. by collectivization) is able to effectively limit the power of economic elites. Centralization of government, the non-existance of any democratic control and extensive state ownership of businesses were the main faults of the GDR and contributed to its identity of a totalitarian state.


    Regarding the political system of the US, Aquagraph already stated that it's the worst of the western democracies and I'd agree with that. Compared to the German system – which is far from perfect – the lacking democratic control is obvious.

     
    In the US, the existing parties can be categorized as: (according to my view, please correct me if I'm wrong)

    1. main parties:
    - Democrats
    - Republicans

    These two parties agree in most areas, but keep fighting over a handful of selected issues like abortion or "gay rights". Most of the political debate among citizens revolves around these subjects. They work like a funnel to move the political discussion away from other, more critical issues.

    2. minor parties: (aka "the rest")
    - Libertarians
    - Socialists
    - Greens
    - ect. (including left and right extremists)

    These parties have close to a 0% chance of actively changing anything on a federal level. They might have better chances in states and the local levels, but I'm not sure about that.


     
    In Germany, the situation looks like that:

    1. main parties:
    - SPD (social democrats)
    - CDU (christian-democratic)

    Similar to to the US, these parties get a large part of the votes. However, they are not at all "too big to fail". Especially the SPD has faced a heavy decline in supporters and consequently, a loss of importance. Chancellors are usually member of those parties, but both SPD and CDU have to rely on one or more of the smaller parties to get the majority.

    2. secondary parties:
    - FDP (classical liberals)
    - Greens
    - The Left (socialist)

    The middle ground constists of several parties and is relatively dynamic. The pirate party could almost be seen as a part of this group in 2009, but then wasn't able to keep up with the others. As I have said above, one of them is usually part of the government.

    3. minor parties & extremists:
    - Pirate Party
    - Communist Party
    - NPD (national democrats)
    - AfD (EU-critics)
    - ect.

    These parties have minimal importance and typically fall below the 5% threshold of the federal elections and are not represented in the government. However, their representatives might hold office on the local or state level


    I also agree that the EU is quickly expanding its responsibilities and becoming a new, more and more prominent level of government. It passes resolutions in many areas, including spatial planning of its member states for example.
    „Man can do what he wants but he cannot want what he wants.“
    – Arthur Schopenhauer

  7. #7
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    I don't promote more regulation in general, I rather there be less regulation in general, there's plenty of areas where deregulation is good. I'm a libertarian after all, just someone who isn't a slave to the usual right wing propaganda. When you listen to most deregulation propaganda, it is not about deregulation but giving some corporation protection over some monopoly or lower taxes. Deregulation often goes hand in hand with some corporation being allowed to charge customers more for their product which they already have a monopoly over, ala net neutrality. Most proponents of deregulation in more in the business of milking their monopoly or the good ole lower taxes scam.

    However, I do believe higher taxes on the rich, and regulations preventing market manipulation from large corporate entities, the big (private) businesses are far more interested in regulation which protects them from competition than I am. I don't believe a democratic state is a solution to fighting corporate power either since it has much more utility than that. It is a mechanism to govern. Fighting corporate power is also not really something that is meaningful either, because the powerful in whatever entity or organization they might create are simply there, they have accrued this power and wealth over time and they exist as entities which can make a individual's life difficult. The question is how do we live in society without gross exploitation and not how to fight against some existence such as corporate power or the state.

    You can fight corporations and states all day and replace them with crap societies as has been done for thousands of years or you can try to build something that's tolerable and effective. I mean you're a first world dilettante, and a pretty good one at that, but almost all societies is vulnerable to the ills of inheritance and heredity, where the rich pass on their wealth to their offspring, who many times squander it or abuse it. The western world has had unprecedented peace and prosperity and it's decay is a product of that period of prosperity. The solutions to these particular problems are generally not to my taste.

    I think all societies(whatever you want to call it) devolve into oligarchy after a long enough period of peace and prosperity if they do not start off that way. As far as the what the founding fathers would like to think about society, they have a few things I agree with. Estate tax, etc and a few things I don't, slavery, female right to vote, etc. Change is good some of the time, but let's bring that Estate tax back up. The rich and powerful have more or less found a way to skirt the estate tax with various tax shelters which has allowed a new oligarchy to form, this is quite unfortunate.

  8. #8
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pa3s View Post
    While I still see an anarcho-communist society as an ideal, I've recently recognized the system's demanding nature. In order to work, the people need to be actively involved in the various instances of the self-administration. And I'm not sure that the majority of the people is either willing or capable of coping with this task.

    However, I believe that a decentralized state with a democratized economic sector (e.g. by collectivization) is able to effectively limit the power of economic elites. Centralization of government, the non-existance of any democratic control and extensive state ownership of businesses were the main faults of the GDR and contributed to its identity of a totalitarian state.


    Regarding the political system of the US, Aquagraph already stated that it's the worst of the western democracies and I'd agree with that. Compared to the German system – which is far from perfect – the lacking democratic control is obvious.
    I think the only effective mechanism of limiting the power of economic elite is some level of wealth redistribution. Centralization occurs due to efficiency problems and or emergencies generally, which creates a motivation for people to support centralization, in any sort of system design, how centralized or decentralized something is changes based on the problem one is trying to solve, when problems which require or is made easier to solve by centralization occurs, there will be a motivation to centralization. Over a long enough timeline, centralization will occur to some level in all decentralized societies. The US system was designed a lot further in the past versus the European systems and has some artifacts of the past, however the EU system have problems which predates it which it has inherited in its system. The US system is showing it's age in some ways and it did not heavily reform or were entirely remade during like the Europeans because of the various civil wars that occured in Europe during the 19th, 20th century.

  9. #9
    Hot Message FDG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Freiburg im Breisgau
    TIM
    ENTj
    Posts
    15,631
    Mentioned
    157 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    Over a long enough timeline, centralization will occur to some level in all decentralized societies.
    Actually, there's been various studies of economic history (one of the few economic discinplines with some credibility) done in this regard. Centralization is generally "beneficial" aka supported by the populace when external threats to a nation are present. Decentralization is preferred in time of peace. The reason being that not every governmental function shows economies of scale, actually economic functions are normally best governed at the local level whereas military and law-related functions are best governed at the central level.
    Obsequium amicos, veritas odium parit

  10. #10
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Actually, there's been various studies of economic history (one of the few economic discinplines with some credibility) done in this regard. Centralization is generally "beneficial" aka supported by the populace when external threats to a nation are present. Decentralization is preferred in time of peace. The reason being that not every governmental function shows economies of scale, actually economic functions are normally best governed at the local level whereas military and law-related functions are best governed at the central level.
    This is my observation as well, however centralization also introduces a set of vulnerabilities. It also occurs in other system and imo generalized for all systems, for example when P2P sharing was new it was much more decentralized than the Pirate Bay/Pirate Party of today. It was very much totally decentralized, but this had exorbitant costs for search and discovery once the usage was high, and super-trackers which centralized search and discovery such as the Pirate Bay was formed, which created a entity which was able to be attacked legally, which of course led to the Pirate Party and the various physical entities which exist today which exist largely to protect the centralized trackers(and promote regulations that do). There are of course decentralized trackers out there now, but the centralized search and discovery has stayed. This is a good example of how centralized and decentralized systems evolve and change. Both centralization and decentralization have vulnerabilities which arise from that organizational mechanism, which is why the most prevalent architecture in system build is some form of distributed(centralized-decentralization) network. This is basically the organizational structure of representative democracy(distributed) which is ultimately the system design that is most robust and efficient for systems engineering at scale. There are situations where this is not effective, but you have to scale down to a very few entities.

    I'm not a big proponent of mob-rule which is effectively Ochlocracy, which is what a lot of people think Democracy is, representative democracy is a ultimately a disturbed system(centralized-decentralization) and not a purely decentralized system. A purely decentralized system could not be effective at scale.

    Basically in systems, human or mechanical any sort of pure decentralization or centralization introduces scaling vulnerabilities which are insurmountable and any political system that proposes one or the other, a pipe dream. It's not like the human and its mind itself is a pure system, it is a highly distributed system which is centralized into awareness by the oneness of personality but decentralized in the various physical components of the body.

  11. #11
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    @hkkmr, in what ways would go about achieving the things you want for society since democracy alone won't get you there?
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  12. #12
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    @hkkmr, in what ways would go about achieving the things you want for society since democracy alone won't get you there?
    You actually think things will get to some utopian place? The world can be made a better place, but there will always be problems, decline and eventually death.

  13. #13
    Robot Assassin Pa3s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Germany
    TIM
    Ne-LII, 5w6
    Posts
    3,648
    Mentioned
    46 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    Constraining the power of economic elites is certainly desirable. But consider how the burden of informed democratic decision-making is evermore compounded by an increasing complexity of policy issues.
    Could you elaborate your point a little further, please?

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    The only minor point I'd add, is that each major party does comprise some different ideological subgroups, which when big enough form their own caucuses: Progressive Caucus (liberal democrats), Blue Dog Coalition (conservative democrats), Liberty Caucus (libertarian republicans), Republican Study Committee (conservative republicans), Tea Party Caucus (now defunct), etc. Making the two parties operate to an extent like opposing coalitions.
    That's interesting, I didn't know these existed. These factions remind me of the "Communist Platform" within the Left Party of Germany. Their existence is (allegedly) one of the major reasons why the social democrats won't form coalitions with the Left Party on a federal level. Interestingly, mostly the West German members of the socialist party are "unreformed" socialist/communists, who don't fully recognize the defects of the GDR or even the Soviet Union. East German party members are usually pragmatic and do have realistic chances to be elected on local or state levels, unlike their West German counterparts.
    „Man can do what he wants but he cannot want what he wants.“
    – Arthur Schopenhauer

  14. #14
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    You actually think things will get to some utopian place? The world can be made a better place, but there will always be problems, decline and eventually death.
    I didn't mention about non-problemacy, utopian world, an end to decline nor immortality. You are evasive to a simple question where I asked for your view of a possible solution. Unless you give me anything else, I will assume the uncalled dismissal in your "answer" means you don't have another option and that acting within a corporate run oligarchy in the guise of democracy is the best option you can think of to curb corporate power.
    Last edited by Aquagraph; 04-22-2014 at 08:04 AM.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  15. #15
    Robot Assassin Pa3s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Germany
    TIM
    Ne-LII, 5w6
    Posts
    3,648
    Mentioned
    46 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    Just that information requirements for a populace obviously ↑ as more matters are decided by democratic vote, and that there's a practical limit (per cognitive bounds of individual rationality) to what humans can be reasonably expected to render intelligent decisions about.

    It's partially what drives democracies' bureaucratization of policy & procedure too granular or otherwise impractical to vote on (which can also subvert democratic processes over time ofc).
    Thanks. Yes, this is true. Even though a greater democratic influence can be realized even with elected representatives (as opposed to a shift to direct democratic elections), it's definitely important that people are able to judge the different options regarding their desirability.

    I think this is altogether a very interesting subject and perhaps I'll be able to write my master's thesis about the inherent problems of democratic planning.

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    'Non-ideological East German pragmatist' sounds like your current Head of State, too.
    Well, East German socialists are certainly not "non-ideaological", even though they try hard not to come across like their totalitarian predecessor, the SED. Merkel is a pragmatic person and enjoys more general acceptance and popularity compared to the average chancellor. I'm already imagining that it'll be a great loss for her party once she decides to leave the stage of politics. This might even be the start of a declining support for the conservatives whose status as a major party was never threatened throughout the post-war German history. All that could also just be wishful thinking on my part, but who knows.
    „Man can do what he wants but he cannot want what he wants.“
    – Arthur Schopenhauer

  16. #16
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    I didn't mention about non-problemacy, utopian world, an end to decline nor immortality. You are evasive to a simple question where I asked for your view of a possible solution. Unless you give me anything else, I will assume the uncalled dismissal in your "answer" means you don't have another option and that acting within a corporate run oligarchy in the guise of democracy is the best option you can think of to curb corporate power.
    I think I answered this question fairly substantively with wealth redistribution and prevention of market manipulation to other posters. You asked a very open ended question which doesn't mean jack shit. If you want policy talk you need to talk in specifics, or GTFO.

    "in what ways would go about achieving the things you want for society since democracy alone won't get you there?"

    This is a crap question which invite no real substantive answer. The current democracy is in decline due to the problems of prosperity and long term peace. I would prefer a solution other than internal conflict and social turmoil, but this is what is likely to occur. The only real solution which may not even fix America's problem is a technological invention which revolutionizes energy production, the political conflicts has been always merely a sideshow to the progress of humanity. Empires die, nations fall, but humanity still goes on, for now at least. The problems of today and past is resources and the distribution of resources, and all the political bsing people do around it.

    I'm not sure what you're looking for so get to specifics. I don't talk up terms like oligarchy or democracy or whatever, it's all labels which blend into each other and basically it is like a form of newspeak. Democracy is Oligarchy, market is free, war is peace, blah blah blah. Look at the mechanics of the thing and talk about it as a system without those ideological labels.

    The move to oligarchy in america since the 70's is largely due to deregulation(let's call it corporate protectionism, I can do newspeak too)/lower taxation and the creation of unbalanced wealth concentration in the hands of a few. So yea, tax them, estate tax them, and redistribute. Reaganomics didn't work, yo.

    This study is a very left leaning study likely done by people who have very similar views as I and who support very similar causes as I do and put money into those causes. They probably support things like higher minimum wage, higher taxes on the rich, higher estate taxes, etc. This is Princeton too, pretty left-leaning school. You basically picked a article by people who are likely in complete political agreement with me. Way to go.

    They also say essentially the same thing, representative democracy is a good thing yo, let's go back to that.

  17. #17
    Robot Assassin Pa3s's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Germany
    TIM
    Ne-LII, 5w6
    Posts
    3,648
    Mentioned
    46 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    Curious if you've seen things like this before:
    [video]
    I didn't see this video in particular, but it reminds me of a very similar game called "Twitch plays Pokémon". The game is broadcasted live over the internet and everyone can join. It even has two different game modes which can be voted at any time. In "Anarchy" mode the game will immediately follow every input wheras it'll act according the majority of votes in "Democracy" mode.

    It looks like that:


    Quote Originally Posted by mfckr View Post
    That'd be pretty awesome. You may find some of this relevant then:
    1. Iron Law of Oligarchy [Political Parties: Oligarchical Tendencies of Modern Democracy]
    2. Bounded Rationality [Bounded Rationality: The Adaptive Toolbox]
    3. Dunbar's Number

    Potentially interesting:
    1. Democracy: The God That Failed – Also available in .de as Demokratie. Der Gott, Der Keiner Ist
    2. Oswald Spengler re: Democracy, Media, Money
    Thank you! I already thought you might come up with several interesting sources. I'll definitely keep these in mind and I might get back to you later when things are getting more specific. It's still in a very early phase and I yet have to find out if the subject is ok. But I'm quite confident it'll work.
    „Man can do what he wants but he cannot want what he wants.“
    – Arthur Schopenhauer

  18. #18
    xerx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    5,466
    Mentioned
    53 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pa3s View Post
    I didn't see this video in particular, but it reminds me of a very similar game called "Twitch plays Pokémon". The game is broadcasted live over the internet and everyone can join. It even has two different game modes which can be voted at any time. In "Anarchy" mode the game will immediately follow every input wheras it'll act according the majority of votes in "Democracy" mode.
    I'm quite familiar with this game.

    During democracy mode, things get fucking done; the majority vote is often the best (or a relatively good) action to take.

    In anarchy mode, nothing ever gets accomplished because of the random inputs. That, and anarchy mode is a godsend to immature kids who have no stake in the game except to troll everyone else and impede progress.
    You can do anything with a bayonet except sit on it.

  19. #19
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    You probably said something in a obfuscating wall of text to someone else that may have kind of answered the question if interpreted quaintly but you are still evading the question. In two two or less sentences, how can your solutions be implemented?
    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    The move to oligarchy in america since the 70's is largely due to deregulation(let's call it corporate protectionism, I can do newspeak too)/lower taxation and the creation of unbalanced wealth concentration in the hands of a few. So yea, tax them, estate tax them, and redistribute. Reaganomics didn't work, yo.
    Reagan's government spending was 68% higher than that of Carter's. I don't know what Reagan has to do with the actual free markets.

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    This study is a very left leaning study likely done by people who have very similar views as I and who support very similar causes as I do and put money into those causes. They probably support things like higher minimum wage, higher taxes on the rich, higher estate taxes, etc. This is Princeton too, pretty left-leaning school. You basically picked a article by people who are likely in complete political agreement with me. Way to go.

    They also say essentially the same thing, representative democracy is a good thing yo, let's go back to that.
    The science in it is what matters. I don't care if the scientists behind it were people who believe in enlightment through fucking children.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  20. #20
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by William View Post
    This I generally agree with. And the last question is a good one. How do you fight against corruption and exploitation when it's human nature to just join-in and reap the benefit if that option is easier than being moral and fighting back?

    I know, hkkmr, that you've said you have a positive long-term vision of the U.S. Perhaps it will last. I've expressed before that my view is somewhat negative.
    My positive long term view is multi-dynastic, you know in the 500-1000 year range. I'm more pessimistic about short term of course.

    Quote Originally Posted by William View Post
    Long-term, my 2cents is that I think the U.S. will fail, simply because of too much greed and spending. People like to talk about the fall of Rome, but the fall of Spain is a much more recent and better example. Why did they fail? It's a detailed answer, but to simplify, they spread out their forces too much, spent too much and started to enjoy themselves rather than work, and eventually their debt mounted up and became too massive for them to maintain. They had to start pulling back, not being able to defend their territories, not able to live luxurious lifestyles, but had to send their people back to work.

    Isn't that the same situation in the U.S.? The U.S. has TRILLIONS of debt, has military forces spread around the world, and has a government budget that is too costly to maintain with any sort of interest(even the poor lazy and useless drive economic activity due to their demand of goods which allow middle class entrepreneurs to capitalize on that demand), unless drastic cuts and major restructuring occur. This would mean a changing lifestyle for many middle-class as well as wealthy Americans.
    Most of American debt is in the form of IOU's to middle class americans, generally in Social Security and other benefits funds which are in debt. Most of this debt has accrued recently due to wars and tax cuts to the wealthy, along with the failure of trickle down economics. Basically what has happened since Reagan. American debt is not a huge issue for the rich and the people trying to defund Social Security in order to line their own pocket books, most of the propaganda and policies in the past 30 years by conservatives is what has driven this debt up by defunding the government, lining the pocketbooks of the wealthy and fighting wars which were costly and often ineffective. And they did it all in the name of small government. Basically a load of bullocks.

    Quote Originally Posted by William View Post
    Will the middle-class Americans keep fighting? Definitely. But I feel the level of greed at the top, the people who control the budget, realize the problem. We've already spent ourselves into this mess, with the problem starting at least from the early 90s, if not the early 70s as you point out. The morality of Americans isn't as big a problem as much as how their motivations and daily demands change because of the demanding economy and the struggle to survive. The system created by the elite seems almost intended to keep people too busy to notice their games.

    That said, there still is hope for America. It would be possible to get out of debt if the Federal Funds Rate were jacked up to 10%+ for 10 years, which would spur inflation for 10 years (a situation similar to the 1970s), and we generate enough real economic growth to maintain a budget while the debt gets inflated and eroded away. This would mean stock prices and real estate prices would come crashing down again as the money supply shrinks, but long-term that solution would set up a real recovery, when we can have unemployment below 5% again and actually have banks paying interest to savings, and it would set up a real, viable economy again in America.

    Whether or not we have a leader willing to embrace that change and face the criticism of things being bad in the short-term is a political question.
    Middle class america is just beginning to become aware of what has happened, due to studies like this one and other information which is more available. What really needs to happen is simply a wealth redistribution from the rich to the poor, this has often required either explosive growth in which much of the growth entered in the hands of the poor or an economic/social collapse which destroyed the pocketbooks of the rich. Sometimes it was a combination such as the Great Depression, WWII, Post-WWII growth cycle. Will something like this happen again? Will American survive the turmoil and come out on the other side, I certainly hope so.

    Ideologically, it's meaningless to talk about what is the right way to do this, what matters is that the concentration of wealth becomes broken up and that money is dispersed to individuals who would use it to drive economic(physical) activity, using supercomputers to play financial games(something that the wealthy is doing all too often) is not economic activity but merely illusionary economic activity.

  21. #21
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    You probably said something in a obfuscating wall of text to someone else that may have kind of answered the question if interpreted quaintly but you are still evading the question. In two two or less sentences, how can your solutions be implemented?
    Reagan's government spending was 68% higher than that of Carter's. I don't know what Reagan has to do with the actual free markets.
    Higher taxes on the rich? Lol?
    I don't know if you're deaf dumb of blind but I've said this multiple times. It's a fairly painful solution due to some consequences but moving the concentration in the right direction is important.

    "So yea, tax them, estate tax them, and redistribute." This is a extremely clear policy decision, which can easily be implemented mechanically. Even redistribute is easily implemented in the form of tax credits to the middle class.

    Also much of the taxation debate currently is totally misrepresented by the media. In the past, during the American Founding Father's time, taxes were extremely regressive and onerous to the poor, which is why taxes were terrible. However Founding Fathers such as Thomas Paine(liberty or death guy) were proponents of progressive taxation, a situation which is occurring today. The rhetoric of the past against regressive taxation is instead being used to eliminate progressive taxation and return to a situation where regressive taxation is the norm, such as VAT and sales tax. In recent years in the US, most Federal/income tax shortfalls have been compensated by increasingly regressive taxation, hotel tax, sales tax, and other form of regressive taxation. Progressive income taxation is one of the least onerous forms of taxation on the middle class and poor.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    The science in it is what matters. I don't care if the scientists behind it were people who believe in enlightment through fucking children.
    Science says representative democracy(distributed system) good, oligarchy(centralized system) bad, anarchy/anarcho-communism(decentralized) bad.. yo..

    Pure centralization and pure decentralization are both unsustainable. Why don't you start studying/doing science instead of smoking pot, like me...

  22. #22
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    Higher taxes on the rich? Lol?
    I don't know if you're deaf dumb of blind but I've said this multiple times. It's a fairly painful solution due to some consequences but moving the concentration in the right direction is important.
    My question is: What incentives would they have to tax themselves? It is already scientifically established that the 1.1% percent of the richest have much more power in legislation than the average voter who has little to none. They would have chosen a smaller economical elite but they didn't have enough material to work on.
    Science says representative democracy(distributed system) good, oligarchy(centralized system) bad, anarchy/anarcho-communism(decentralized) bad.. yo..
    Science doesn't make value judgements, yo. Be more specific.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  23. #23
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    My question is: What incentives would they have to tax themselves? It is already scientifically established that the 1.1% percent of the richest have much more power in legislation than the average voter who has little to none. They would have chosen a smaller economical elite but they didn't have enough material to work on..
    The rich and power have more power, but it's not like all the rich and power have only interest in oppressing the powerless. There are rich and powerful people who want a good society and fairness and a world free from exploitation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    Science doesn't make value judgements, yo. Be more specific.
    Science certainly informs value judgement, don't be ridiculous. It tells you what's going to kill you and it tells you what is going to mechanically fail and how it is going to mechanically fail. Distributed systems are much more resilient and scalable than centralized or centralized systems.
    If you're not using science to make value judgement you're doing it wrong.

    Maybe I'm wrong about what people want, and they really don't want a scalable and sustainable system but what they really want is power and exploitation and brutality, I've certainly seen people wanting this. In that case science would inform you different.

  24. #24
    Decadent Charlatan Aquagraph's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Continental Vinnland
    TIM
    OmniPoLR
    Posts
    3,967
    Mentioned
    126 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    The rich and power have more power, but it's not like all the rich and power have only interest in oppressing the powerless. There are rich and powerful people who want a good society and fairness and a world free from exploitation.
    Okay, good. Now we can watch them do just that. I bet the next guy from Citigroup will get it right.

    Quote Originally Posted by hkkmr View Post
    Science certainly informs value judgement, don't be ridiculous.
    I never said it wouldn't. It does make give out information and information can be used to make good judgements. However, science can't made judgements that directly say that any political system is morally bad. What is the science you are referring to? I'm sorry but if you want science on your side, you are going to have to do more than to declare that it is on your side.
    “I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The U.S. government will lead the American people in — and the West in general — into an unbearable hell and a choking life. - Osama bin Laden

  25. #25
    Local Hero Saberstorm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Isle of Man
    TIM
    Robespierre
    Posts
    2,064
    Mentioned
    56 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Default

    Is hkkmr an LSI? The style of argumentation is totally different than any of the ILEs around here!
     
    God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him.
    - John Piper


    Socionics -
    the16types.info

  26. #26
    Glorious Member mu4's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Mind
    Posts
    7,966
    Mentioned
    568 Post(s)
    Tagged
    3 Thread(s)

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Aquagraph View Post
    Okay, good. Now we can watch them do just that. I bet the next guy from Citigroup will get it right.


    I never said it wouldn't. It does make give out information and information can be used to make good judgements. However, science can't made judgements that directly say that any political system is morally bad. What is the science you are referring to? I'm sorry but if you want science on your side, you are going to have to do more than to declare that it is on your side.
    Nietzsche did a thing on morality called "On the Genealogy of Morality", despite what people might say about him he had a few decent things to say about morality.

    Good and bad aren't the same as good and evil, moral judgements are framed in terms of good and evil. It's quite funny because he describes the mentality of individuals such as yourself in terms of ressentiment. I don't really have time to walk thru the classics with you or system engineering, or any number of things which I have done and experienced in my life but here goes.

    I don't really care about democracy or ideological terms for systems but distributed systems which I have extensive experience are built mechanically to be scalable, resistant to attack and less overbearing on individual nodes. But these systems weren't exactly invented in computer science, long before these systems became computer systems they were human administrative systems and various physical systems such as connected neural networks such as your mind. From a analytical perspective, representative democracy is a distributed system where as something like autocracy is centralized and something like anarchy is decentralized. Well both centralized and decentralized systems have massive failings when attempting to scale. Distributed systems have no such problem. There are problems with distributed systems, which can cause them to fail, but for the population and connectedness of the world today, very centralized and decentralized system would simply mechanically fail. Science can very definitely tell you how and why a system mechanically succeeds or mechanically fails. Now if you are a proponent in mechanical failure and would like to see mechanical failure of human society over and over again, you're free to choose a system of your choice to govern. I will choose representative democracy, which is a distributed system because I see mechanical failure as generally a bad thing. I am not fond of America going to oligarchy and I want it to return to be more of a representative democracy, and I work towards ways to redistribute the concentration of wealth so that this may occur. If it doesn't, I gave it my best shot.

    There are rich people like Warren Buffet and others who want to raise taxes and think the rich should be paying more of their wealth, paying their fair share so to speak. There are quite a number of benevolent and kind individuals in the world, you never really know who they are or if it's a front, but that's life.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •