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10-10-2011 02:06 PM
cocolulu Jdang: I think the definitions are pretty clear, it's just that people use the definitions varyingly. North Korea is The Democratic People's Republic of Korea, and China is the People's Republic of China. Whether a country is actually 'Socialist' or not, there are degrees of shading. A lot of people consider that we're a mixed capitalist/socialist economy, heavily leaning towards capitalism of course. People are afraid to use the term though because it's loaded with imagery of autocratic/centralized governments.

CheeseforSteeze: Just playing devil's advocate here: what's so great about defending the constitution? There are instances where a strict or originalist interpretation of the constitution would have hindered progress. For example, it's pretty easy to say that the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is unconstitutional. It prohibits private businesses from turning away customers based on race or gender.
10-10-2011 02:04 PM
jdang307
Quote:
Originally Posted by RVM View Post
National Socialism without the racism and hatred is actually a pretty good form of government... probably superior to ours in many ways. It's too bad the originator of National Socialism happened to be Hitler.
I was just telling someone the other day. Free Market communism might turn out to be a superior form of govt. in 30 years. Econimics wise.But then again what is China but an authoritarian capitalist country. Not much communism going on over there.
10-10-2011 01:41 PM
RVM National Socialism without the racism and hatred is actually a pretty good form of government... probably superior to ours in many ways. It's too bad the originator of National Socialism happened to be Hitler.
10-10-2011 01:14 PM
jdang307
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowjeeper View Post
I don't consider Nazi Germany as a fascist regime. But that's just me.

Pretty sure that's just you lol.
I'm not the only one.

Most people couldn't even define fascism if they wanted to. When you start digging into the origins of fascism. Nazi Germany doesn't fit neatly. The full name of the Nazy Party was the "National Socialist German Workers' Party."

There are just as many definitions for Nazism as there is fascism. Neither fits neatly into the other. If Nazi Germany was fascism, what was Mussolini's Italy?

And you have to take into account how central and deep Nazi's racism plays into their regime. No other fascist group has taken racism to such an extent. So no, I don't consider Nazi Germany Fascism. I consider it Nazism. They created something new there. An authoritarian, interventionist racist ideology. The italian fascists saw the State as a vessel to corporatism more or less. A bridging of capitalists and the working class. Nazi's saw the state as a way to preserve just the german race and kill off everyone else.
10-10-2011 11:35 AM
snowjeeper I don't consider Nazi Germany as a fascist regime. But that's just me.

Pretty sure that's just you lol.
10-09-2011 10:49 PM
CheeseForSteeze
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarzanman View Post
As such, it doesn't surprise me that people do not understand what socialism is when the term has been coopted as a pejorative term for decades by our political leaders and the media.

socialism (little 's'), or at least socialist programs (like public highways and collecting taxes) are an integral part of our way of life here in the USA. I doubt that most people understand that.... and even if they did, it would conflict with their media-driven world view so hard that they would rationalize it somehow "Well, thats not really socialist because <insert reason that makes no sense>".
This is/was part of my original point. When it is said a program is 's'ocialist, its dynamics in terms of the government performing that function in society is what is critical, not if it invokes some image, or is perceived to mean to invoke an image, of Soviet Russia, Cuba or worse, the DPRK.

I don't think anyone argues that Government should perform no functions in society. I just think it's prudent they actually stop doing this nuclear football crap, not making 1000+ page bills availabe until the night before a vote, voting when most of Congress is out of Holiday leave, or histrionics about "every month 500 million Americans will lose their job".

If we are to have Government perform an expanded role in our lives, I want them to sit and THINK about how legislative action will unfold, including unintended consequences.
10-09-2011 10:29 PM
RVM Socialism actually does have a set of requirements that must be met in order to be defined as "socialist". Essentially, read Marx's Communist Manifesto. We embody many of the values set forth by Marx there...

The problem here in the US is that self-interest > all. Relatively few concern themselves with the betterment of society as a whole.
10-09-2011 01:16 PM
Tarzanman I would argue that taxes (at least federal taxes) are definitely about wealth redistribution. The idea is to take money from everyone and spend it in a way that benefits the country.... but it is often times spent on regional programs/purposes. So, money taken from you and me might go to subsidize disaster recovery for private citizens and their private property in New Orleans or something. This is because local county or state tax bases might not be able to bear the costs of rebuilding after a flood or whatever.
10-09-2011 10:34 AM
jdang307 I don't even consider highways and collecting taxes socialist, or socialist'esque. But then again that brings us back to, what does socialism mean. It's as nebulous as fascism. Nobody can agree with one definition. I don't consider Nazi Germany as a fascist regime. But that's just me.

One of the classical definitions of socialism is the state control or ownership of means of production. But I feel that is a bit incomplete. The second half of that equation requires we discuss why the state should own any means of production. To re-distribute wealth, or equality. Because then we'll label anything govt. as being socialism.

Taxes collected to fund the military. Not socialism. Taxes collected to redistribute as welfare. Perhaps. That doesn't make our country socialist, however. Therefore,I don't consider highways or any other govt. program as socialist unless the aim is to equalize, redistribute, etc. Highways were created mainly for national defense reasons. Economic reasons as well.

Infrastructure is never socialist, in my opinion.

But I agree 100%. That's why Thomas Jefferson advocated for a little public rebellion once in a while. Like the Tea Party and the Occupy Wall Street movements. Of course Jefferson advocated fora little bloodshed, but then again he always did. Even back then, the public was never fully informed. He felt little uprisings and rebellions would raise awareness. Then he called for the blood of patriots and tryants, but that's another discussion!

Quote:
The people can not be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions it is a lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty.
10-09-2011 09:08 AM
Tarzanman If you talk with most run-of-the-mill people in general, then you will probably be VERY disappointed with their independent, objective understanding/competency on a great many topics regarding civics/anthropology/social science.

Its easy to blame such people and call them 'stupid', but the simple fact is that most of these people spend 40+ hours a week doing something else (like working or taking care of their families) and that there are large corporate interests with a lot of money who actively attempt to brainwash them with propoganda created by psychologists.

Yeah, that *sounds* crazy until you think about what a talking point is, how often the same commercials come on the air, and that the entire advertising agencies exist is to change the natural habits of consumers (which most normal folks are).

I've had arguments with people about whether the Constitution applies to non-citizens (yes, of course it does. read how its written) and political 'discussions' (term used loosely) with friends of mine who cannot name a single supreme court justice, congressman or define the term 'judicial review'. Yet everyone I have had these arguments/discussions with believes in their heart of hearts that their opinions on political matters are just as valid as those of someone informed on the issues. As such, it doesn't surprise me that people do not understand what socialism is when the term has been coopted as a pejorative term for decades by our political leaders and the media.

socialism (little 's'), or at least socialist programs (like public highways and collecting taxes) are an integral part of our way of life here in the USA. I doubt that most people understand that.... and even if they did, it would conflict with their media-driven world view so hard that they would rationalize it somehow "Well, thats not really socialist because <insert reason that makes no sense>".


P.S. If you're interested in this stuff, then a very easy, very funny place to start is George Orwell's book "Animal Farm".
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