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Old 03-08-2011, 07:09 AM
 
Location: it depends
6,074 posts, read 5,129,534 times
Reputation: 5767

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyNTexas View Post

As much as you'd like to try, you cannot separate "Capitalism" from the "Capitalists", and there is NOTHING AT ALL free market about the "Capitalists". They abhor free markets ... these are monopoly men who wake each day looking for another example of "free market" to devour.

It would be similar to suggest that "free farming" existed, with one company or group controlling the water spigot supplying every farm. Some farms get a little water ... and some a little more ... some may get a lot and some not at all .... yet there is free competition amongst the farmers? Hardly.

I noticed that you didn't address the question of Farmers? And this may be a wild assumption on my part, but I'd wager that what ever it is that you and your company provide humanity, it's probably of lessor significance than food and water?

And just maybe .... humanity would survive without you and your company?

I know this much .... humanity would be a lot better off if Monsanto Corporation ceased to exist .... I dare say the Gulf Coast residents would be better off if BP never existed .... the American people would be better off if the Federal Reserve Corp never existed. I could list hundreds more "entities" who's profits and success have NOTHING TO DO with value provided, unless your measure of value includes sickness, war, exploitation, suffering, and death. If these things ever become valuable to humanity, then you could make a case. Until then, your theory of value relativity has a few holes to plug up.
Guy, I lived for thirty years in farm country (corn/beans) but I would not claim to be an expert. Let me tell you what I see.

Farming is not a free market. 40% of the corn crop goes straight into a government boondoggle, ethanol, which is protected by tariffs, has a government-mandated market, and receives direct subsidies. Ethanol sucks three government teats at once. The whole rest of the farm system relies on a web of government programs and payments.

At the level of the individual farmer, however, there are free market elements. One factor that applies is the same one that has affected many, many businesses: consolidation and increasing scale.

Thirty years ago in the middle of the country, there were a lot of farmers operating 160-400 acre farms. Now far fewer farmers run much larger operations, 1200-6000 acres. The same phenomena can be seen in grocery stores, car dealers, insurance agencies, etc., etc., etc.

So as the number of farmers shrank by 80% over the 30 years, who do you think emerged successfully at the end? What sets apart the survivors?

Thirty years ago, an old farmer died and left a little land to each of two kids. They each had an equal shot. Today, one has no land, the other now farms 6,000 acres.

Fifty years ago, a farmer had five sons. One is now retired, owns 640 (valuable) acres. The others have little.

When the need to scale up reduced the number of farmers by 80%, it was not the least efficient operators who survived. Some good guys got pushed off for lack of access to capital, or bad luck, or other factors beyond their control--but 80% were going to hit the wall in any event. You look at the survivors, you find hard-working, smart, effective operators. I've heard one farmer knock another farmer's skill at charming the widows into renting their land to him--but if success depends on getting the acres rented, it is just sour grapes.

I would be more wrapped up in the demise of the small farmer if anyone cared about the demise of the small shop in every other line as well.

And guess what? We're still getting the food grown. The market assures us that, as long as there is a buck to be made in satisfying our needs and wants, our needs and wants will be satisfied. It works.
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:22 AM
 
Location: The Island of Misfit Toys
2,767 posts, read 2,192,829 times
Reputation: 2341
Quote:
Originally Posted by Visvaldis View Post
Competition is not a bad thing when the results benefit more than just one selfish, greedy person or group.
Competition under capitalism means that humans are degraded to animals that viciously battle each other for a few crumbs just to survive.
Instead of enjoying life many are struggling just to get by.
So, the choice is; cultivate human qualities, or emphasize cruelty, brutality, greed, selfishness, and ruthlessness, which are capitalism's definition of competition.
It is great to see someone who actually gets this. Thank you!
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:27 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
31,777 posts, read 24,017,954 times
Reputation: 12105
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreedomThroughAnarchism View Post
Don't really understand your response, to be honest, don't know what it is that you want an illustration of.... but I'll try to offer a brief follow-up, anyway.
My response was asking for an illustration of a realistic set up previously seen, anywhere and at any point in time, that supports your ideas. I wasn't looking for more of the same (as in "a brief follow up").
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Old 03-08-2011, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
31,777 posts, read 24,017,954 times
Reputation: 12105
Quote:
Originally Posted by hilgi View Post
Do you mean Capitalism as in the means of production are privately owned and operated for profit?

Or Crony Capitalism/Corpratism as in Corporations are given special protections and benefits from the government?
How do you prevent crony capitalism from showing up?

Quote:
Originally Posted by actonbell View Post
Is an ignorant strategy. (yes, you made me google)

"A company engaging in corporate cannibalism is effectively competing against itself." Corporate Cannibalism financial definition of Corporate Cannibalism. Corporate Cannibalism finance term by the Free Online Dictionary.
Technically true, but I meant my own definition which I assumed you would ask to explain. And Ma and Pa shops can't compete with corporate conglomerates. Think... sort of what invoked the American revolution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GuyNTexas View Post
As much as you'd like to try, you cannot separate "Capitalism" from the "Capitalists", and there is NOTHING AT ALL free market about the "Capitalists". They abhor free markets ... these are monopoly men who wake each day looking for another example of "free market" to devour.
Amen!
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:26 AM
 
1,811 posts, read 926,579 times
Reputation: 503
Quote:
Originally Posted by kazoopilot View Post
Keep buying the propaganda!
Oh I will, believe you me. And the "propoanda" sure buys me a lot of nice stuff, beautiful house, pool, hot tub, three trucks and more. Nice to have 250,000 "propagandas" a year coming in!!!
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:12 AM
 
Location: South Jordan, Utah
6,652 posts, read 7,120,975 times
Reputation: 2840
Quote:
Originally Posted by EinsteinsGhost View Post
How do you prevent crony capitalism from showing up?

There are a few things we can do. One is have government stick to the mandate of protecting rights, not picking favorites. They less money they have to dole out, the fewer cronies that can pay back.

Another answer is to reform corporate charters. Charters used to be very simple, one company one industry, no one company owning businesses in 20 industries. The charter can also bring back liability to executives and even have them pay for the (free) limited liability status for stock holders.

Charter reform is key.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:18 AM
 
Location: Dallas, TX
31,777 posts, read 24,017,954 times
Reputation: 12105
Quote:
There are a few things we can do. One is have government stick to the mandate of protecting rights, not picking favorites. They less money they have to dole out, the fewer cronies that can pay back.
Whose rights? What rights? Would that include the idea of corporate personhood, and unchecked “speech” when it comes to supplying politicians with cash?
Quote:
Another answer is to reform corporate charters. Charters used to be very simple, one company one industry, no one company owning businesses in 20 industries. The charter can also bring back liability to executives and even have them pay for the (free) limited liability status for stock holders.
And do you think such charters would be supported by free marketers? In fact, who would even dare to bring about those changes that actually existed at one point when politicians get elected on money and sponsorships, much less candidates who spend millions of their own monies to be the regulator?


How realistic would it be to expect corporate charters as they existed in the early days of this nation?
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Southern Minnesota
5,990 posts, read 11,207,690 times
Reputation: 3195
I'll tell it like it is. For those of us who are NOT rich, and who did NOT make fortunes in the 1960s and 70s when we still had a sensible economic system, this country SUCKS. It sucks for poor and middle-class people. It SUCKS. There is NO real opportunity anymore -- this is not 1955, or even 1970. The "land of opportunity" moved to Canada, Europe, Brazil and China. The "American Dream" is now the "Norwegian Dream." America is now the land of corporate despots and their paid government shills. It is a big scam -- a Ponzi scheme -- the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. If immigration to Europe or Canada wasn't so restrictive, I would be gone yesterday.

Also, for those of you determined to make this a personal attack against me and call me a loser: I went to college, was a part of extracurricular activities, competed on academic teams, lead class projects, earned a 3.46 GPA (would have been 3.7 if not for the first semester of my freshman year), moved across the country to find a job and landed employment. I run a grant writing business on the side. I'm not some welfare queen or druggie or dropout. I just think this country has nothing to offer young people who are graduating in this recession, or older people who got laid off from their jobs. I actually give a flip about someone other than myself.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:45 AM
 
8,801 posts, read 5,341,991 times
Reputation: 3673
Quote:
Originally Posted by marcopolo View Post
Guy, I lived for thirty years in farm country (corn/beans) but I would not claim to be an expert. Let me tell you what I see.

Farming is not a free market. 40% of the corn crop goes straight into a government boondoggle, ethanol, which is protected by tariffs, has a government-mandated market, and receives direct subsidies. Ethanol sucks three government teats at once. The whole rest of the farm system relies on a web of government programs and payments.

At the level of the individual farmer, however, there are free market elements. One factor that applies is the same one that has affected many, many businesses: consolidation and increasing scale.

Thirty years ago in the middle of the country, there were a lot of farmers operating 160-400 acre farms. Now far fewer farmers run much larger operations, 1200-6000 acres. The same phenomena can be seen in grocery stores, car dealers, insurance agencies, etc., etc., etc.

So as the number of farmers shrank by 80% over the 30 years, who do you think emerged successfully at the end? What sets apart the survivors?

Thirty years ago, an old farmer died and left a little land to each of two kids. They each had an equal shot. Today, one has no land, the other now farms 6,000 acres.

Fifty years ago, a farmer had five sons. One is now retired, owns 640 (valuable) acres. The others have little.

When the need to scale up reduced the number of farmers by 80%, it was not the least efficient operators who survived. Some good guys got pushed off for lack of access to capital, or bad luck, or other factors beyond their control--but 80% were going to hit the wall in any event. You look at the survivors, you find hard-working, smart, effective operators. I've heard one farmer knock another farmer's skill at charming the widows into renting their land to him--but if success depends on getting the acres rented, it is just sour grapes.

I would be more wrapped up in the demise of the small farmer if anyone cared about the demise of the small shop in every other line as well.

And guess what? We're still getting the food grown. The market assures us that, as long as there is a buck to be made in satisfying our needs and wants, our needs and wants will be satisfied. It works.
You've provided a view of what we see, but seem lost as to how it got there .... most likely because you reject the fundamental premise I've already presented ... but I'll apply it here to see if it might provide you a surge in neuron activity.

The agricultural industry is a mirror of many other industries which have succumbed to the fraud of "globalization" and multinational corporate takeover, facilitated by government policies and regulations. And though none of it has been beneficial to the general welfare of America and the American people, food production should be of immense concern, as reliance on foreign made electronics and clothing is a far different scenario than relying on foreign food. A nation that cannot feed itself, is a nation in grave danger.

In this small space, I cannot outline in detail, but I'll try to condense it .... government intervention, coupled with big agri corps have slowly swallowed up the small farmer over the past 4 decades, consolidating much like every other industry through regulations and environmental restrictions, along with other actions such as an easing of restrictions for foreign food imports that have artificially kept commodity wholesale pricing well below the rate of inflation, all of which benefited the multinationals at the expense of the local grower. These local US farmers left to their own devices, and free of government intervention have always been pretty healthy economically (contrary to myth), but instead of being helped by subsidies, have been harmed, as those subsidies have encouraged overproduction and lower commodity prices, with the greatest benefits going to the big multinationals. Those lowering prices via foreign imports and overproduction created financial pressure as production costs continued to rise while their crop yield values didn't keep pace. In many cases, those reasonable to passing profit margins historic to the local farmer in general began to go into the red from a Dollar to Acre measure, resulting in a higher cost per bushel to produce than that bushel returned at market, forcing them to further rely on government subsidies to make up the difference or go belly up.

All of the lip service from the halls of congress .... "We have to help the farmer!!" was just that .... lip service to justify Ten's of Billions of dollars of farm subsidies that primarily went into the pockets of the multinationals, which, contrary to the stated claims and goal, produced the opposite effect ... hurting, not helping the small farmer. And just where have we heard this scenario before? You mean there are government programs that wind up producing the opposite result of their intended goal? LOL. Yeah ... almost EVERY TIME that is the case.

Eventually, through increases in taxes, regulations and foreign imports, these small farmers were driven into selling out to the international corporations .... which was not coincidental, but a well structured scheme to produce that result.

The Big Agriculture Corporation XYZ have their lobbyists in Washington "helping" to fashion agriculture legislation, while average Joe Farmer doesn't have that voice ..... so, soo-prise soo-prise, when those bills end up putting the small guy out of business, and allowing the big corporate operations to flourish and swallow him up.

The most recent legislation ... the Food Safety Act ... will be the final push to eliminate the remaining small farmers ... especially the organic industry, paving the way for Monsanto and it's total monopoly domination of agriculture production using their GMO seed and pesticides... and placing the entire food industry in their hands, and the health of the American people in extreme danger.

The bottom line here is that your Value=Success formula doesn't hold water, and is a complete scam. All it is is a worn out ploy applied to industry in general across the board that blames the victims of market manipulation and created monopolies for his inability to cope with modern advancement and global market realities .... it's total BS.

Once upon a time, it was government regulation that was structured to impede or prevent the emergence of monopolies because of the negative effects recognized in such economic models long term. Now, we have the exact opposite occurring because the monopoly men now control government.

Do you get it now?
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Old 03-08-2011, 11:03 AM
 
Location: Austin
28,986 posts, read 15,545,072 times
Reputation: 7744
Quote:
Originally Posted by EinsteinsGhost View Post
Actually, no. Bill of rights was added as an amendment to the constitution, and only to ensure the powers granted didn't take away people's rights. The role of the government was defined well before that, including regulation of commerce.

And corporations were meant to be kept on a short leash, at the time by states since they issued strict charters (a reason, Madison/Jefferson proposal of an amendment to regulate and prevent monopolies was not implemented since similar laws existed at state level at the time). That many people think that the founders were for free ride to corporations is amazing. Having fought against the interests of mega corporations for freedom, they knew better.

Hmmm.... can't find anything in the US Constitution about corporations.

And I don't know anybody who supports "giving a free ride to corporations..."

And yes, the primary purpose of the constitution is to protect the rights of the people and limit the powers of government... not to protect the rights of government.
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