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Explaining Socialism To A Republican

April 17 2012 at 10:01 AM
Phred  (Login Phred01)
Sufi

I was talking recently with a new friend who Im just getting to know. She tends to be somewhat conservative, while I lean more toward the progressive side.

When our conversation drifted to politics, somehow the dreaded word socialism came up. My friend seemed totally shocked when I said All socialism isnt bad. She became very serious and replied So you want to take money away from the rich and give to the poor? I smiled and said No, not at all. Why do you think socialism mean taking money from the rich and giving to the poor?

Well it is, isnt it? was her reply.

I explained to her that I rather liked something called Democratic Socialism, just as Senator Bernie Sanders, talk show host Thom Hartman, and many other people do. Democratic Socialism consists of a democratic form of government with a mix of socialism and capitalism. I proceeded to explain to her the actual meaning terms democracy and socialism.

Democracy is a form of government in which all citizens take part. It is government of the people, by the people, and for the people.

Socialism is where we all put our resources together and work for the common good of us all and not just for our own benefit. In this sense, we are sharing the wealth within society.

Of course when people hear that term, Share the wealth they start screaming, OMG you want to rob from the rich and give it all to the poor! But that is NOT what Democratic Socialism means.

To a Democratic Socialist, sharing the wealth means pooling tax money together to design social programs that benefit ALL citizens of that country, city, state, etc.

The fire and police departments are both excellent examples of Democratic Socialism in America. Rather than leaving each individual responsible for protecting their own home from fire, everyone pools their money together, through taxes, to maintain a fire and police department. Its operated under a non-profit status, and yes, your tax dollars pay for putting out other peoples fires. It would almost seem absurd to think of some corporation profiting from putting out fires. But its more efficient and far less expensive to have government run fire departments funded by tax dollars.

Similarly, public education is another social program in the USA. It benefits all of us to have a taxpayer supported, publicly run education system. Unfortunately, in America, the public education system ends with high school. Most of Europe now provides low cost or free college education for their citizens. This is because their citizens understand that an educated society is a safer, more productive and more prosperous society. Living in such a society, everyone benefits from public education.

When an American graduates from college, they usually hold burdensome debt in the form of student loans that may take 10 to even 30 years to pay off. Instead of being able to start a business or invest in their career, the college graduate has to send off monthly payments for years on end.

On the other hand, a new college graduate from a European country begins without the burdensome debt that an American is forced to take on. The young man or woman is freer to start up businesses, take an economic risk on a new venture, or invest more money in the economy, instead of spending their money paying off student loans to for-profit financial institutions. Of course this does not benefit wealthy corporations, but it does greatly benefit everyone in that society.

EXAMPLE American style capitalistic program for college: If you pay (average) $20,000 annually for four years of college, that will total $80,000 + interest for student loans. The interest you would owe could easily total or exceed the $80,000 you originally borrowed, which means your degree could cost in excess of $100,000.

EXAMPLE European style social program for college: Your college classes are paid for through government taxes. When you graduate from that college and begin your career, you also start paying an extra tax for fellow citizens to attend college.

Question - You might be thinking how is that fair? If youre no longer attending college, why would you want to help everyone else pay for their college degree?

Answer - Every working citizen pays a tax that is equivalent to say, $20 monthly. If you work for 40 years and then retire, you will have paid $9,600 into the Social college program. So you could say that your degree ends up costing only $9,600. When everyone pools their money together and the program is non-profit, the price goes down tremendously. This allows you to keep more of your hard earned cash!

Health care is another example: If your employer does not provide health insurance, you must purchase a policy independently. The cost will be thousands of dollars annually, in addition to deductible and co-pays.

In Holland, an individual will pay around $35 monthly, period. Everyone pays into the system and this helps reduce the price for everyone, so they get to keep more of their hard earned cash.

In the United States we are told and frequently reminded that anything run by the government is bad and that everything should be operated by for-profit companies. Of course, with for-profit entities the cost to the consumer is much higher because they have corporate executives who expect compensation packages of tens of millions of dollars and shareholders who expect to be paid dividends, and so on.

This (and more) pushes up the price of everything, with much more money going to the already rich and powerful, which in turn, leaves the middle class with less spending money and creates greater class separation.

This economic framework makes it much more difficult for average Joes to lift themselves up by their bootstraps and raise themselves to a higher economic standing.

So next time you hear the word socialism and spreading the wealth in the same breath, understand that this is a serious misconception.

Social programs require tax money and your taxes may be higher. But as you can see everyone benefits because other costs go down and, in the long run, you get to keep more of your hard earned cash!

Democratic Socialism does NOT mean taking from the rich and giving to the poor. It works to benefit everyone so the rich can no longer take advantage of the poor and middle class.

-http://www.addictinginfo.org/2012/04/15/explaining-socialism-to-a-republican/

 
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JVH say
(Login JVH)
Sufi

Explaining Socialism To A Republican

April 17 2012, 10:06 AM 

 

socialism-comic.jpg




rejected and denied by many, accepted and embraced by few : falsifiability
- it is not what we (think we) know that matters, it is what we can show true that does
as the maxim demands; truth is demonstrably fact and fact is demonstrably true
everything else ... mere BS -


New!! Improved!! Now With CD-Formula!!
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CD: short for inevitability

 
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Vince
(Login MoxiFox)
Von Klumpen

I believe in

April 17 2012, 7:29 PM 

reducing things to their lowest common denominator ... in order to get a good understanding of dynamics at work.

The present day economic system might be far too complicated for the average "uneducated" person to understand but ... that complexity isn't some kind of scientific complexity; it's purely man-made complexity.

So, think about the simplest community ... a tribe or a commune ... and observe how such units operate.

Do they throw their "lazy" people out of the tribe and leave them to die of starvation and exposure?

If they did that, it would destroy the tribe because it would destroy the tribe's morale. Somehow, they learn ... and adapt and cooperate on ways to incorporate these elements ... without becoming sadistic. They FIND ways to allow their misfits to fit into SOMETHING.

I think the term "lazy" is far too over-used. People are NOT inherently lazy. People get BORED out of their minds when they have nothing worthwhile to do with themselves.

But ... a lot of people find it extremely difficult to fit into a mass-production, profit driven society. People like to be creative but there's no creativeness in mass production or in working your ass off to achieve .... what?

Many "lazy" people have remarkable skills in the things they do as hobbies. Why not utilize those skills instead of belittling such people? I reckon in a tribe ... these skills would be utilized in some way.

And then there's the control aspect ...

A lot of "lazy" people would FIND their niche if they weren't so overwhelmed with all the rules and regulations and personal income accounting and paying of personal income tax etc. Because they're not ALLOWED to peddle their personal wares without adhering to all the rules ... they simply drop out and do nothing.

You might argue that EVERYONE has to pay their own share of the social burden and that's only possible by charging personal income taxes.

I'd argue that MANY of the "lazy" people are really very generous with their own offers to "help" others. They don't want money; they want to be appreciated. So even if they make no monetary contributions to their society ... they STILL make valuable contributions through their helpful activities.

Yes, I believe in a social democratic system too ... but I don't believe in hard left or hard right politicking.

National health care for example ... should be available to everyone without restriction because of poverty. Yet, national health care becomes exorbitantly expensive over a while. But WHY does it become so expensive?

Well, it becomes expensive because doctors get into that business to make PROFIT! Not to serve their fellow human beings and make a reasonable living (like the old itinerant doctors used to do because of their own desire to serve humanity) ... but because it's a big money-maker.

In our media we're inundated constantly with dualistic messages. The first message is fear-mongering about our NEED to constantly visit our doctors and get endless tests to "catch" things "early." Also .. a continual drug advertising barrage ... with the caveat to "check with your doctor." The message coming across seems to indicate that without doctors and drugs ... we'd all die in short order and that it's THEM who keep us surviving.

But on the other side of the media message is the constant warning about health care costs rising to "unsustainable levels"!

Well .... health care costs would be nominal if people didn't go see a doctor unless it was absolutely necessary .... right? I mean ... people live and die at the same rate ... whether they ever go see doctors or not. But ... if people DIDN'T go see their doctors regularly and if surgeries weren't scheduled routinely ... there WOULDN'T be a health industry would there?

Ideally, what you want is medical care (and other social services) ONLY when they're really needed, as in the case of emergencies. You don't want the fire department setting fire to buildings and then putting out those fires ... just to justify their existence --- do you?

The key to social services then, is to find some way to tightly monitor what transpires with the people who are working for the services ... and to cut out all unnecessary activity that merely results in profiteering.

-Vince

 
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Jackie
(Login BlueJudah)
Sufi

We are experts at taking away people's self reliability

April 18 2012, 12:36 AM 

We once had communities that were able to grow, nurture and produce within themeselves.

All of nature was there. To eat, drink, heal and make commodities.

We found like communities and could barter / exchange.

Then we got 'civilised' and wanted to make everyone else 'civilised'...

Then came dependence and reliance and the means to CONTROL by the Few.

Great post, Vince. I really like your grip on what is happening and how you are able to communicate so well.

Love
And Thanks
Jackie
happy.gif

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Maybe there is now The Awakening?

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Vince
(Login MoxiFox)
Von Klumpen

Thank you Jackie

April 18 2012, 2:14 AM 

Yes, I think the NWO plans will fail ... even though all the signs and pointers indicate that they're gaining or winning for the time being.

The reason I think that is BECAUSE people are waking up.

In itself, waking up doesn't accomplish anything since waking up is merely a passive "activity". However, the achilles heel of the elite is their lack of numbers. They need US -the people- to carry out THEIR plan ... against ourselves.

Right now they seem to have all of the government people in their back pockets doing exactly what they want. Those people direct the rest of bureaucracy to do the bidding of the elite. It's a huge steam-roller operation that seems to be poised on inevitable victory over us.

But ...

Even IF the people in government are never brought to accountability or trial for their involvement -even IF these people aren't going to turn around and start doing what is right ...

Time itself is against the NWO.

People get old and retire; new people come in to take their place. If the new generation which is poised to take the reins of power at the door ... are fully aware and awake when they take those reins ... they're going to do things DIFFERENTLY than their predecessors. It's just that simple.

It's interesting, you know ... to review history and see some of the strange obsessions which seemed to grip our forefathers. Why were they so militant in their pursuit of unions ... for example? Why were they so absolutely "touchy" about protecting freedom of speech? I mean ... they'd go nigh ballistic if you even DARED to suggest that others' behavior needed to be controlled by LAW.

Well, once we SEE the results of oppression and manage to get the power to overcome it ... it seems a LOT more valuable to devote time towards the care-taking of the systems.

-Vince

 
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Iceman
(no login)

Commons

April 18 2012, 8:37 AM 

We care enough about our homes to publicly fund fire departments, but people don't regard their physical well being as so important. We fund libraries but our health has less meaning than books.

It doesn't make sense to me that we will find freeways and interstates but won't fund a health care system that helps everyone.

It just makes no sense at all.

 
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Vince
(Login MoxiFox)
Von Klumpen

My point was

April 18 2012, 9:03 AM 

... that "health care systems" really DON'T HELP the majority of people who use them. The same amount of people would be just as healthy (or healthier) on average ... if they never laid eyes on a doctor in their entire life times.

I haven't seen a doctor in over 20 years. That doesn't mean I'm in such good health I don't NEED to be aware of what might be wrong with me ... or take remedial steps to get myself healthier.

I HAVE visited doctors to get checkups or to seek help ... but not ONCE did any of those doctors ever help me to get well. Heck, not one of them even had useful suggestions on how I might help myself get out of the problems I went to get help for! They don't UNDERSTAND the nature of healing; they merely follow procedures and ALWAYS have some drug prescription to send their patients off with.

Now, in a useful health care system, every patient claim would be reviewed by an impartial 3rd party to evaluate the reason for using the system and ... whether those patients actually reported benefits from their interaction with the system.

If it's true that most people mostly DON'T need intervention to help them get better -that our bodies inevitably heal themselves if given the right conditions- there would naturally be only a fraction of people using the free health care system. That would allow auditors to study the cases and keep a tight reign on abuses of the system and keep costs in line.

You might find such a suggestion utterly appalling or ridiculous because OBVIOUSLY there are a lot of sick people around us who need help. I agree that there are. However ... how many of those same people are actually being HELPED? Do they get better after seeing their doctors and if so ... would they have gotten well just as well ... if they HADN'T visited their doctors? How many of them are simply put on "management" programs of assorted drugs and never actually improve?

Naturally, there ARE SOME people who benefit from health care and it's THOSE people for whom a health system would be useful. The rest of the doctor visitors are just revenue generators for the receiving end of the system.

-Vince

 
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Iceman
(no login)

The point is

April 18 2012, 12:06 PM 

You are absolutely correct and I agree that the USA health care system is a non-system and for the most part a miserable failure. Doctors and hospitals are a rip-off.

Yet, there are people who need care. Heart attacks, type 1 diabetes, cancer just to name a few. There are accidents where serious injury occurs, thus we do need a good medical system and it should be free.

As for people who drink too much, smoke and eat too much and don't exercise they should be treated accordingly.

Health care is a personal responsibility, but there are many cases where health fails no matter what.

USA physicians actually know very little about health. They know body mechanics and that's about it. Most don't even know anything about the drugs they prescribe.

 
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Vince
(Login MoxiFox)
Von Klumpen

Amen

April 18 2012, 12:35 PM 

Back at the "beginning" ... when Obama was starting up with the national health care plan, I thought Americans were crazy to oppose it. We have medicare in Canada and I'd sure go with that than with no safety net at all.

But as I began to realize what this system in the U.S. is all about and how it's going to work (with private insurance companies dictating their own terms) ... I started to understand the vehement opposition to it. It appears to be a neat trap.

-Vince

 
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QUITTNER
(no login)

Re: Amen

April 19 2012, 11:39 AM 

Probably the health care system originally proposed by Obama is (quite?) different from the system actually legislated because the original version could never have been passed by legislators. Compromises often are detested by everybody concerned, and the system as finally enacted may in practice turn out to be worse than the system used to be. Will the Supreme Court reject some parts of the health care legislation? We shall see what the final results will be.

 
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QUITTNER
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Vince believes in reducing things to their lowest common denominator

April 19 2012, 11:18 AM 

I am reminded of the system we all lived under while we were quite young. We didn't then need any money, all our needs were taken care of nevertheless in what we might call an absolute monarchy system.
..... I am also reminded of the system that Jesus operated, called "The Kingdom of God". Members who were specially selected didn't have, nor need, any money; their reasonable, non-luxury, needs were met in exchange for (hard?) unpaid work.
..... A lot depends on the kind of personalities members of a system have, and, to work properly, a system for everybody has to be (quite?) different from one for use in a society consisting only of specially selected "chosen" people.

 
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Jackie
(Login BlueJudah)
Sufi

I tend to be that way as well

April 19 2012, 12:24 PM 

Just seems a natural way of working stuff out for me.

An example. People denouce Hitler. I say who was behind Hitler, supported Hitler, helped him to power. And what was the history of those people? And before them?

Nothing seems to appear out of nothing. happy.gif

Messenger, god, Source...and before Source?

Smile! happy.gif

I doubt we can ever reduce to THE LCD, things either of the Spirit or the 'Earthly'...

Love
Jackie
happy.gif



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(Premier Login Oscar50)
Forum Owner

Good points

April 20 2012, 6:46 AM 

Who was behind Hitler? How could a country devastated by WW1 bounce back so quickly, get so much money for armamaments?

But we should do the same today.

Who was behind Dubya? Who is behind Obama?

The answers to all of the "Who is/was" above may be eerily similar.

 
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QUITTNER
(no login)

Re: Good points

April 20 2012, 10:47 AM 

Hitler (20 April 1889 30 April 1945) and his party were fighting the Communists after WW1, and many people in Germany were afraid of the Communists who had won in Russia in 1917, during WW1, and later had formed a government in the South of Germany. See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/German_Revolution_of_1918%E2%80%931919
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spartacist_uprising
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bavarian_Soviet_Republic
..... "An enemy of my enemy is a friend!" As a result Hitler got lots of support from the many people in Germany and other countries who were afraid of Communism. No wild roses then.
..... Many politicians get/got support, probably legally and illegally, including the 2 Bush and Obama. Fear can be a powerful stimulus. It often helps to look for causes of events.

 
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