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March 16, 2008

Comments

Shuggy

"My problem, though, is that many on both the left and right are unable or unwilling to see the debate in these terms. I wonder why."

I think people both from left and right have a problem separating markets and ownership in the way you do. Maybe on the left it's a vulgar Marxism hang-over: it isn't, for them, just ownership of the means of production that's the problem but ownership per se. This makes it impossible for them to divorce markets from what they perceive to be capitalism because entering a marketplace carries the assumption that you have something to sell.

dearieme

Because if the Left entered a calm discussion about these matters, they'd be giving up their hope that in the end they can use it all as an excuse to butcher people by the million?

Shuggy

"Because if the Left entered a calm discussion about these matters, they'd be giving up their hope that in the end they can use it all as an excuse to butcher people by the million?"

If they entered the discussion, is this what they could expect to pass for a rational contribution from the right? It's similar to the sort of breath-taking insight that we get so much of in the blogosphere: Hitler was a socialist because, after all, his party were called the National Socialists. Duh! Stick to the maths, dearieme.

Gina McCulloch

Today Northern Rock, tomorrow the world, comrades!

Scott Hughes

Great post!

I avoid using the term 'capitalism' because it it has such different meanings to different people. Instead I more specifically say what I support or oppose about any particular economy or theory.

KMcC

Shuggy, Hitler was a socialist, as is perhaps hinted at by the name of the party he led. Do you think socialist is in there just to confuse matters? Because Hitler was feeling daffy one morning?

His socialism, though, was based on bogus theories of race and blood (rather than bogus theories of class): a strong state providing every need for the pure few, the rest can whistle.

Shuggy

"Shuggy, Hitler was a socialist, as is perhaps hinted at by the name of the party he led."

Making my point for me. Or did you leave out the irony tags from your comment? Jeezus!

miguel

Vladimir Jirinovsky - a liberal and a democrat!

Neil

"If they entered the discussion, is this what they could expect to pass for a rational contribution from the right?"

Yes. Not that the right has anything it needs to brush under the carpet or anything - oh no, siree.

Alex

I take it you haven't heard of the Liberal Christian Party of Ukraine? Not liberal, not notably Christian, not actually a party, set up by Russians.

Larry Teabag

Wrong, Mr D. This thread amply demonstrates that pro and anti-capitalists understand each other perfectly well: pro-capitalists think that antis are all fascists, and anti-capitalists think that pros are all morons.

chris strange

I would guess that one of the problems is that the arguement comes with a century of baggage attached to it from the fight between centrally planned (generally Socialist) economies and market driven (generally Capitalist) economies. Markets won this argument decisively, but that doesn't mean that some on the left (e.g. much of the Guardian editorial team) haven't given up trying to argue that markets are a bad thing.

In a free market economy ownership of companies is like ownership of everything else, and there to be traded at the discretion of the owners. This will lead to some firms being owned by Capitalists and some owned by their workers. Just as we have now in our fairly free market economy. It would be extremely rare that even the most rampant supporter of capitalism would argue that every solicitor, GP, architect, hedgefund manager, or band member change the way their businesses are owned. Likewise there are still some capitalist owned companies around.

The only way that you can change things is by trying to change the mix of companies from ones that need great big dollops of capital (like heavy industy) which would probably need a capitalist to supply it, to ones that need human captial (such as hedge funds, financial services, arts and design based companies). Which would, ironically, make the unions an great force for capitalism in their efforts to try and protect the old, dieing, manufacturing industries. It would also make Thatcher's breaking of union power a great boon for the creation of a more socialistic society in the long run.

Backword Dave

Chris, you'd probably like this post, 'Maybe you're thinking to yourself, "Why is this IOZ fellow, who says he's all for the free movement of labor and capital across borders and over oceans and to distant stars and foreward and backward in time, why is this guy so down and dismissive of capitalism?"' http://whoisioz.blogspot.com/2008/03/confidence.html

 jordan retro 1

Oh, How much I miss you! If the passionate refreshing breeze knows my heart, it can tell you that I miss you and care you for my life’s time. If graceful white cloud knows my heart, it can tell you I love you and would be together with you forever. Do you like it?

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