Discussion in 'Members Lounge' started by T-123456, Oct 10, 2016.
A comment on this picture.
1) The problem with this example is that the differences and diverse needs between these three people are obvious. The solution is simple because it provides the exact same benefit/result to each person. It doesn't even begin to address where the crates came from and who paid for them. Who has the actual right of ownership, and did that person give them up willingly out of human compassion or were they taken from him by the government and re-distributed according to ambiguous and unreliable evaluation policies? If this mimicked real life, then the person on the left is the one who worked hard for his income yet was forced to pay for all three crates, even though he doesn't need one. Then the other two people are given crates that they did not pay for, even though they may very well be just as capable of meeting their own needs as the first individual. Why is it one person's responsibility to provide for others? This system is great for the receivers, not so great for the providers.
And some answers to this comment,
''Wow. You just made it about money. If you don't have enough of it, you're worthless. If you have a lot of it - more than you need - you have to be "forced" to help others who, for whatever reason, don't have enough. What if this was food, and not crates? Are you willing to let someone starve in front of you while you just drop your extra food in the dirt? Will you ground your extra food in the dirt for good measure because you feel that someone who is needy didn't "work hard" in his life for it? God complex much? Is money your god? How about you get some empathy and compassion and realize how privileged you are. You have no idea how hard some people are working just to stay alive. While you're comfortable enough saying, "I worked hard at the job I have making enough money for 3 families" some people are working hard at keeping one family alive on a salary that doesn't even cover one person because of a little thing called oppression. You probably don't believe oppression exists. You probably think people who don't have enough to live on are just lazy. But you know, I hope your circumstances continue to favor you because you couldn't hack it if they led you to need help from your fellow humans. Hopefully, if you fell upon hard times for whatever reason, there would be someone more compassionate than yourself to help you out of it. Peace to you.''
''It's about what people need and why. Money doesn't make the world go round, despite what your government leads you to believe. Kindness, understanding and love is where real progress comes from and everyone is different including yourself so that gives you absolutely no right to comment on how hard someone works as actually, you have no idea. All you know about is your life and how hard you work but really, you don't know how hard you have to work because you clearly haven't a clue how hard other's have to work, no understanding of it.''
What does this picture tell us in your opinion?
That's an interesting take, but I can't say I agree about the system not being good for providers and only good for recipients, The systems of governance that strive for and activity sought to promote quality were wrought with issues on both sides - the most common form of governance that sought to implement an equality and equity system was Communism.
Under a Communist system everyone received the same perks for their labor. Peasants were raised to the status of doctors who were lowered to the status of mere farm laborers. The producers were screwed because their labor wasn't being rewarded in accordance to its worth - in a market based system, in a Communist system the worth is the same as any other labor - but the recipient are also damned because they may not be receiving the value of their contributions either.
The producer of the box reaps the same benefits as the recipient under an equality movement, both are given equal rewards. In practice this doesn't really work. As the majority of Communist governments have found out, people's drive to be rewarded for their time leads to mass exodus, a lowing of productivity as the incentives to produce decline, corruption and civil strife.
Communist seeks to treat people equally - Equalism. Communism seeks to make people equal - Equity. But Communism ends up make an imbalanced situation even more imbalanced.
Under a Capitalism adhering nation the producer is rewarded in accordance to their market value, which may shift from place to place, person to person, with shifts in scarcity of goods, resources, labor or transportation. It's inherently unequal.
The recipients under a Capitalist system adhering to equality still reap the same benefit - the box - but the producer is rewarded for their labor differently then in a Communist system.
So whether the producer is damned or not depends a great deal on the system under which they live or how equality is ascribed... of course this latter notion is an oxymoron, but equality can be striated. The recipients are held to an equal account, the producers are given market value for their goods and services.
A real world example would be a soup kitchen. The recipients are given an equal share of the food to ensure they are fed, but everyone gets their meal and no one is given preferential treatment by getting seconds or larger portions. But the producer? On the immediate end you have those preparing the meals and running the facility. They could be state workers working for a salary, volunteers working out of the kindness of their heart, prisoners or those working under court order doing community service, school students on a field trip working for school credit, each is compensated for their time, but the compensation isn't equal.
More removed from the immediate, the producers of the food, the farmers, packagers, logistics supply, they have already been rewarded for their service by the time the food reaches the cooks at the soup kitchen, so they've been rewarded for their service as well.
The kitchen creates both equality and inequality simultaneously. The immediate producers are rewarded differently, but according to their market value. The kitchen recipients are given equal servings and service.
Now the fun question: which is more equal between Capitalism and Communism?
@Armstrong @Freyja @Pathfinder @Spectre @Gessler anyone have a take?
Do we treat people equally? Or do we make people equal?
Do you desire a box and only a box no matter its necessity or your situation?
Or would you like to examine what your needs are and ask for assistance to ensure your needs and those of everyone else are on a level field - whether they were already on it or had to be risen with help or unequal rewards?
Do we reward doctors and farmers equally and with the same benefits? Or do we help the farmer to reach the same quality?
One is fair to everyone. The other is not, but in the long-term makes everyone fair, just in unequal measures.
I can understand where you're coming from but the mistake we often end up making is that we look to so-called Communist regimes like China or the erstwhile Soviet Union and conclude that what they had over there was Communism.
Nothing can be further from the truth in fact. What the Soviet Union had was 'State' Capitalism vs 'Private and State' Capitalism in the United States.
Because what differentiates Communism from Capitalism is 'who' is making the decisions regarding 4 basic economic questions: What to produce, How to produce it, For whom to produce it and Where to produce it?
In 'communism' its the community of workers that have a say in deciding that. In capitalism its the owners or their stewards (CEOs, Directors etc.) who decide those questions. In the Soviet Union it was the bureaucrats and not the workers making those decisions.
A follow up question usually is that do the workers have the same intrinsic value to the company as a senior manager with a great alma mater and years of experience? My response to that usually is that we're beginning with the assumption that everyone will have an equal say - I am not suggesting that. I am talking about an equitable say where managers taking on worker's viewpoint on board (materially so) not only because it is expedient because you want happy workers because happy workers are productive. But also because there is a genuine realization that workers have a right to decide how the company is going to be run because at the end of the day they are the ones who create wealth not just the capital invested by the owners. And I think that giving workers a legal say, as individuals (not just Unions), in making those economic decisions is a fair way of reflecting this symbiosis that exists between owners of capital and those who increase it (workers).
At any rate even if it is an equal say. Then so what? Why is it that we don't use the same argument in our normal lives? Why don't way say that bureaucrats and technocrats, because they are the best people to know what decisions ought to be made for the good of the State, should be the only ones who have a say in how the country is run or have a greater say than the common people? Isn't it because we accept the fact that people have a right to affect how and what are the material decisions that will effect their lives?
I say lets reinvent and rethink the workplace and bring some genuine democracy to the working environment as well.
Do I have all the answers? No...but I'm just saying that democratization of the workplace is something that is worth looking at as an inalienable right. That workers/employees are not 'human' resource like fiance or other resources at the disposal of a company; they are the company !
About the picture: I'd go for the right one. I think equity is more important than equality. You, for example, wouldn't be getting a maternity leave in an 'equal' society because us guys can't give birth and so treating everyone equally demands treating everyone the same. On the other hand, in an equitable society, you did and you must get a maternity leave because we value people as individuals who are equal in value but different in terms of their aspirations in life, their circumstances, their individual limitations and their personal choices. It is only fair and just that a woman who wishes to start a family and thereby not only embark on a beautiful personal chapter in her life but also is fulfilling an essential biological function - the continuation of our species - must be given special consideration because not doing so would be not only tantamount to punishing her for an evolutionary characteristic she was imbued with without having a say in it but also because we would be punishing her for the purest emotion that can ever exist between two individuals - a mother's love !
So I'd take equity over equality anytime.
Jeeeeez that got to serious !
On the other hand someone needs to cancel your maternity leave because @Freyja is taking care of Fox Jr. all the time whilst you sit on the couch munching on Cheetos, drinking Vanilla Coke and developing a pot belly !
Yup thats better...that sounds more like me !
Damn I write long sentences !
Right. Communism has never been demonstrated in real terms, though the Soviets did their best to equalize everyone, then devolved into madness.
But at its core, or as Marx intended, it was a system that strove for equality through equity. Everyone treated the same, everything is the same. Humans just got in the way of the concept was all. Damn humans.
What about recipient versus producer? Does the producer necessarily stand to lose under an equalist system? Can't a system be both equalist and unequal at the same time, like I hopefully described.
Economics and civics were never my strong suits.
Yeah!! Smash the system! Power to the people!!!
Oh dear, now you've gone an got me all hopped up on revolutionary sentiment!!
On this I agree. I got 10 months of mandatory maternity leave. I'm three months in and bored to death. I've done everything I wanted to do with my time away from work, even though I can actually still work, I'm just not needed right now.
I need someone to cancel my leave and let me go back to work or I'm going to go crazy!
And I like Serious Armstrong, it's interesting to probe your mind for any semblance or normalcy.
Wow,the first time since at least three years?
Nope what they had was a totalitarian regime under a state capitalist system. In fact Lenin actually admitted as such when he said in The Impending Catastrophe and How to Combat It (September 1917): Socialism is merely state-capitalist monopoly which is made to serve the whole people. He reiterated the same in Left-Wing Childishness (May 1918).
In addition Marx, so far as I know, never came up with the idea of a vanguard party (the Communist Party) but rather democratization of the state and the workplace. It was Lenin who came up with that idea and it led to the creation of a completely totalitarian state.
Incidentally Marx didn't even think that Russia being a largely agrarian society was fit for a socialist revolution; he, in fact, thought that it was Germany. As he believed that to move towards socialism a society must have exhausted the avenues provided by capitalism and people need to make a conscious decision to move towards a society in which there would be common ownership over the means of production and the distribution of the wealth and decisions pertaining to them would be made in a democratic way that reflected the aspirations and opinions of the community.
Interestingly Marx didn't want a violent revolution but a revolution through democratic means. The communists who shared this view were called the Mensheviks as opposed to the Bolsheviks who won out in the end in Russia and who prescribed to the opposite view.
How realistic is that? I don't know. But I still think that democratization of the workplace is a realistic and admirable goal to aspire for.
No...think of it this way: You've got most startups in Silicon Valley run as communist enterprises where the input of most employees is taken into consideration in a material way and not because it makes for good reading for PR purposes. Now imagine having such cooperatives on a larger...a much larger scale.
Producers wouldn't be worse-off. Neither would the consumers or the employees.
I personally think that it would be a good idea because I don't think if workers have a say in this you would have a lot of companies in Western countries shifting production to countries overseas because workers would have a legal right to veto that. Its not as if any of the Board members have ever voted themselves out of a job whenever talk of cost-cuts are brought up.
In the long run this would be good for the company as well because it not only forces companies to innovate to cut costs without cutting jobs but also ensures that you've got a happy workforce that has a genuine stake in the company because they are affecting the decisions about it.
It would also be good for the economy and society because you've not only got a highly experienced workforce but also you're not hemorrhaging jobs.
In my opinion this ought to go side by side with government policy which is thus that no imports will be allowed from companies which do not have at least XYZ minimum wage or ABC health and safety standards etc. (subject to a fully audited compliance to these). As such you would be asking Norwegian companies to compete on a 'fair' and 'just' basis with their counterparts elsewhere instead of sweatshops where the wages are horribly low and working conditions are beyond atrocious.
Honey with that pot belly of yours the only revolution you're gonna win is the one where you overpower the weighing scale !
Sorry...it was a joke...don't hit me...don't hi....aaargggh !
Why don't you get a hobby?
How about laser tag?
Probe my mind?
Theres nothing there...its as empty as a coconut !
@T-123456 Wonderful topic and finally something to think ..
I am in stealth mode in all places.. But i am dropping here to say one thing @Armstrong is one the most accomplished brain among the masses you would ever meet in an online forum. ..
He is one of the sane minds... of course he loves to troll.. but if you get him out of troll mode once in a blue moon.. you will get such kind of posts what you saw above.
He is rated at very high "thinker" levels among my country forumers and they love and respect him a lot for that.. and they love him more for trolling too..
On topic: Equity is what you require really.. Consider the case of India and use democracy as a semblance. . You might see reservations being way of creating equity but it failed and became equality. The results are loss of performance based approach or merit based approach and in turn relying on equality measures to get that plank/box under their feet. Society requires equity but for whom? for which section? and how are they going to select, monitor the progress and pull the plug (remove the box)?
Dont restrict yourself to just Communism. Check others as well.. The failed experiments of Equality and Equity will be visible.. Bcz finally its more from the perspective of adopting some good methods of Marxism.. Unfortunately there is always a difference between idealists, realists and reality. reality is skewed by the ones who are actually neither idealists nor realists. Thus there is a great mismatch among all the 3.
Consider a simple case. a class of people .. consider say Migrants who fled Syria. Take classic place examples - Europe as of today.. Now think again can these people accommodated to give them Equality and then Equity. And then see the scenario where there is already a widespread POV that they are additional burden, borders must be sealed, they are here for temporary times and will be returned soon to their homelands. Why is that? Bcz the scope of Equality and Equity both somehows scares them that either wealth, resource, lifestyle and in the end their "hard earned" stuff will have to be shared in order to uplift them and bring them at par with the societal norms or average as depicted by the picture. I took this example bcz it gives a simple explanation why having Equality and Equity is a difficult proposition.
Consider another example.. Take the case of USA- Consider the scenario of Colored and non colored ppl. On paper its Equality ... But is that really so? What about Equity.. This is a case classically of your own citizens not of migrants like the above one in Europe's case.
Again these examples are not of communist spaces but rather other forms of government cases.
Communism is unfair becuase it theoretically doesn't allow one guy to exceed the other even though he is more capable. With capitalism you can exceed the other guy and if you have something left over and if you are nice you can share, of course the other guy isn't guaranteed a meal.
I like a blend between both systems, everyone should be able to to suceed without interference or being forced to pay for someone else who isn't as capable. Now there are people who are very capable but may have had a bad start in life, or made bad decisions and has decided to change, in order for that guy to succeed he may need some help so I think people should be obligated to help others who are in need because one day they may need help as well.
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