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You want less regulation?

post #1 of 115
Thread Starter 
I've got your less regulation.

Enron, Lehmann, G-S, BP, Massey, Exploding Watermelons...

Just don't let your cat eat one.

Quote:
It follows discoveries of the heavy metal cadmium in rice, toxic melamine in milk, arsenic in soy sauce, bleach in mushrooms, and the detergent borax in pork, added to make it resemble beef.

The Libertarian ideal of a free market is a noble one, but it's a theory, just like Communism, that only works under the assumption that people will act responsibly.

And Ron Paul wants to abolish the FDA.
post #2 of 115


This one is too funny.

tonton's reaching here. Plus it's interesting how it reveals a misconception he holds about the free market.

Anyway. Whatever. Wish I had the last 5 minutes of my life back.

Perhaps we should discuss the US federal government's adventures in agriculture during the Great Depression for a comparison: FDR promoted higher food prices by paying farmers to plow under some 10 million acres of crops and slaughter and discard some six million farm animals.

But, indeed, we should trust the government on these issues.

And then there's the whole issue of government agricultural policies that have led to the obesity and diabetes problems in the US.

And those are just what's happened with agriculture.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #3 of 115
Thread Starter 
So I guess a policy that leads to dead babies because of melamine in milk powder is a better solution... Whatever gets your goat. Except we're talking about dead babies here, so fuck your goat. I want my milk powder regulated and tested, TYVM. Agricultural subsidies are another issue altogether. If you can't see the difference and how one can separated from the other then God help you, please.
post #4 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

So I guess a policy that leads to dead babies because of melamine in milk powder is a better solution... Whatever gets your goat. Except we're talking about dead babies here, so fuck your goat.

Oh...I thought you were talking about exploding watermelons.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

I want my milk powder regulated and tested, TYVM.

Me too. Well...except I don't use milk powder...but you get my point. The difference is I don't assume that the state is the only way or even the best way for this regulation and testing to occur.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Agricultural subsidies are another issue altogether. If you can't see the difference and how one can separated from the other then God help you, please.

I can see the difference just fine.

But again...I missed it...what were you saying about the US government destroying all of that food when people were starving?

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #5 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Me too. Well...except I don't use milk powder...but you get my point. The difference is I don't assume that the state is the only way or even the best way for this regulation and testing to occur.

How do you propose private regulation and testing be enforced? By private militia?
post #6 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

But again...I missed it...what were you saying about the US government destroying all of that food when people were starving?

I try to avoid responding to straw men. Ask me in another thread, and I'll respond.
post #7 of 115
Thread Starter 
One thing that never ceases to amaze me is that anti-regulation folk scream from the top of their lungs that government can't be trusted, but fail to admit that private enterprise can be trusted even less.

The fact is, no one can be trusted, period. Which is why regulation exists.

Government can't be trusted. True. Which is why we have checks and balances on one level, and democratic process on the other. Market forces are a much weaker substitute, as they are easily obscured by lack of transparency, collusion, market manipulation, and abandonment of responsibility.
post #8 of 115
This "invisible market" will guide us all if only we believe in it enough to abandon all regulation is just another incarnation of bullshit religious "thought."

 

“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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“The nitrogen in our DNA, the calcium in our teeth, the iron in our blood, the carbon in our apple pies were made in the interiors of collapsing stars. We are made of starstuff.” 
-Sagan
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post #9 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

I've got your less regulation.

Enron, Lehmann, G-S, BP, Massey, Exploding Watermelons...

Just don't let your cat eat one.



The Libertarian ideal of a free market is a noble one, but it's a theory, just like Communism, that only works under the assumption that people will act responsibly.

And Ron Paul wants to abolish the FDA.

Unfortunately people do not act responsibly and that is the problem with the economy we are confronted with right now.Ron Paul would get rid of all entitlement programs if it was up to him. he cares less about the poor or middle class!
post #10 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

I try to avoid responding to straw men. Ask me in another thread, and I'll respond.

Of course you do.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #11 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

How do you propose private regulation and testing be enforced? By private militia?

Yes. Private militia.

The anti-market mindset never ceases to amaze me in the extreme limits of its imagination.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #12 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

One thing that never ceases to amaze me is that anti-regulation folk scream from the top of their lungs that government can't be trusted, but fail to admit that private enterprise can be trusted even less.

The fact is, no one can be trusted, period. Which is why regulation exists.

Government can't be trusted. True.

No one can be trusted so lets give lots of power to some of them!

And then let's pretend that this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Which is why we have checks and balances on one level, and democratic process on the other.

actually works, and this:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Market forces are a much weaker substitute, as they are easily obscured by lack of transparency, collusion, market manipulation, and abandonment of responsibility.

is actually true.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #13 of 115
And today on "Fun With Fallacies"...

Quote:
Originally Posted by marvfox View Post

Ron Paul would get rid of all entitlement programs if it was up to him. he cares less about the poor or middle class!

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #14 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

And today on "Fun With Fallacies"...




Exactly. Social Safety Net Programs are not "Entitlement Programs".
post #15 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

No one can be trusted so lets give lots of power to some of them!

And then let's pretend that this:



actually works, and this:



is actually true.

History is on my side. Don't like What FDR did? Vote him out of office. Can't vote him out of office because of political inertia? Congress enacts term limits. Don't like what BP did? Oh, well.

Let's pretend like you have a counter-argument, instead of a dismissal.
post #16 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Exactly. Social Safety Net Programs are not "Entitlement Programs".

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #17 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

History is on my side.

It's actually not. But whatever.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

Don't like What FDR did? Vote him out of office. Can't vote him out of office because of political inertia? Congress enacts term limits. Don't like what BP did? Oh, well.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

Reply

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #18 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

So I guess a policy that leads to dead babies because of melamine in milk powder is a better solution... Whatever gets your goat. Except we're talking about dead babies here, so fuck your goat. I want my milk powder regulated and tested, TYVM. Agricultural subsidies are another issue altogether. If you can't see the difference and how one can separated from the other then God help you, please.

Less regulation is one thing, and probably desirable in most industries. Overregulation is another. Of course, one can take it too far, just as one can over-regulate, which is where I think we are now. It depends what you mean by "regulation" anyway. Should we have certain environmental standards and what not? Absolutely. Should the government ban incandescent light bulbs? Not so sure.
I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #19 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

It's actually not. But whatever.





Typical replies from someone without an argument. As expected.
post #20 of 115
Sorry, the entire first section of this chapter is just too good not to post. It is extremely relevant to the conversation and explains much better than I could why the libertarian approach is the correct approach.

Quote:
Chapter 10: The Public Sector, I: Government in Business

People tend to fall into habits and into unquestioned ruts, especially in the field of government. On the market, in society in general, we expect and accommodate rapidly to change, to the unending marvels and improvements of our civilization. New products, new life styles, new ideas are often embraced eagerly. But in the area of government we follow blindly in the path of centuries, content to believe that whatever has been must be right. In particular, government, in the United States and elsewhere, for centuries and seemingly from time immemorial has been supplying us with certain essential and necessary services, services which nearly everyone concedes are important: defense (including army, police, judicial, and legal), firefighting, streets and roads, water, sewage and garbage disposal, postal service, etc. So identified has the State become in the public mind with the provision of these services that an attack on State financing appears to many people as an attack on the service itself. Thus if one maintains that the State should not supply court services, and that private enterprise on the market could supply such service more efficiently as well as more morally, people tend to think of this as denying the importance of courts themselves.

The libertarian who wants to replace government by private enterprises in the above areas is thus treated in the same way as he would be if the government had, for various reasons, been supplying shoes as a tax-financed monopoly from time immemorial. If the government and only the government had had a monopoly of the shoe manufacturing and retailing business, how would most of the public treat the libertarian who now came along to advocate that the government get out of the shoe business and throw it open to private enterprise? He would undoubtedly be treated as follows: people would cry, "How could you? You are opposed to the public, and to poor people, wearing shoes! And who would supply shoes to the public if the government got out of the business? Tell us that! Be constructive! It's easy to be negative and smart-alecky about government; but tell us who would supply shoes? Which people? How many shoe stores would be available in each city and town? How would the shoe firms be capitalized? How many brands would there be? What material would they use? What lasts? What would be the pricing arrangements for shoes? Wouldn't regulation of the shoe industry be needed to see to it that the product is sound? And who would supply the poor with shoes? Suppose a poor person didn't have the money to buy a pair?"

These questions, ridiculous as they seem to be and are with regard to the shoe business, are just as absurd when applied to the libertarian who advocates a free market in fire, police, postal service, or any other government operation. The point is that the advocate of a free market in anything cannot provide a "constructive" blueprint of such a market in advance. The essence and the glory of the free market is that individual firms and businesses, competing on the market, provide an ever-changing orchestration of efficient and progressive goods and services: continually improving products and markets, advancing technology, cutting costs, and meeting changing consumer demands as swiftly and as efficiently as possible. The libertarian economist can try to offer a few guidelines on how markets might develop where they are now prevented or restricted from developing; but he can do little more than point the way toward freedom, to call for government to get out of the way of the productive and ever-inventive energies of the public as expressed in voluntary market activity. No one can predict the number of firms, the size of each firm, the pricing policies, etc., of any future market in any service or commodity. We just know by economic theory and by historical insight that such a free market will do the job infinitely better than the compulsory monopoly of bureaucratic government.

How will the poor pay for defense, fire protection, postal service, etc., can basically be answered by the counter-question: how do the poor pay for anything they now obtain on the market? The difference is that we know that the free private market will supply these goods and services far more cheaply, in greater abundance, and of far higher quality than monopoly government does today. Everyone in society would benefit, and especially the poor. And we also know that the mammoth tax burden to finance these and other activities would be lifted from the shoulders of everyone in society, including the poor.

We have seen above that the universally acknowledged pressing problems of our society are all wrapped up in government operations. We have also seen that the enormous social conflicts entwined in the public school system would all disappear when each group of parents was allowed to finance and support whichever education it preferred for their children. The grave inefficiencies and the intense conflicts are all inherent in government operation. If the government, for example, provides monopoly services (e.g., in education or in water supply), then whichever decisions the government makes are coercively imposed on the hapless minority whether it is a question of educational policies for the schools (integration or segregation, progressive or traditional, religious or secular, etc.), or even for the kind of water to be sold (e.g., fluoridated or unfluoridated). It should be clear that no such fierce arguments occur where each group of consumers can purchase the goods or services they demand. There are no battles between consumers, for example, over what kind of newspapers should be printed, churches established, books printed, records marketed, or automobiles manufactured. Whatever is produced on the market reflects the diversity as well as the strength of consumer demand.

On the free market, in short, the consumer is king, and any business firm that wants to make profits and avoid losses tries its best to serve the consumer as efficiently and at as low a cost as possible. In a government operation, in contrast, everything changes. Inherent in all government operation is a grave and fatal split between service and payment, between the providing of a service and the payment for receiving it. The government bureau does not get its income as does the private firm, from serving the consumer well or from consumer purchases of its products exceeding its costs of operation. No, the government bureau acquires its income from mulcting the long-suffering taxpayer. Its operations therefore become inefficient, and costs zoom, since government bureaus need not worry about losses or bankruptcy; they can make up their losses by additional extractions from the public till. Furthermore, the consumer, instead of being courted and wooed for his favor, becomes a mere annoyance to the government, someone who is "wasting" the government's scarce resources. In government operations, the consumer is treated like an unwelcome intruder, an interference in the quiet enjoyment by the bureaucrat of his steady income.

Thus, if consumer demand should increase for the goods or services of any private business, the private firm is delighted; it woos and welcomes the new business and expands its operations eagerly to fill the new orders. Government, in contrast, generally meets this situation by sourly urging or even ordering consumers to "buy" less, and allows shortages to develop, along with deterioration in the quality of its service. Thus, the increased consumer use of government streets in the cities is met by aggravated traffic congestion and by continuing denunciations and threats against people who drive their own cars. The New York City administration, for example, is continually threatening to outlaw the use of private cars in Manhattan, where congestion has been most troublesome. It is only government, of course, that would ever think of bludgeoning consumers in this way; it is only government that has the audacity to "solve" traffic congestion by forcing private cars (or trucks or taxis or whatever) off the road. According to this principle, of course, the "ideal" solution to traffic congestion is simply to outlaw all vehicles!

But this sort of attitude toward the consumer is not confined to traffic on the streets. New York City, for example, has suffered periodically from a water "shortage." Here is a situation where, for many years, the city government has had a compulsory monopoly of the supply of water to its citizens. Failing to supply enough water, and failing to price that water in such a way as to clear the market, to equate supply and demand (which private enterprise does automatically), New York's response to water shortages has always been to blame not itself, but the consumer, whose sin has been to use "too much" water. The city administration could only react by outlawing the sprinkling of lawns, restricting use of water, and demanding that people drink less water. In this way, government transfers its own failings to the scapegoat user, who is threatened and bludgeoned instead of being served well and efficiently.

There has been similar response by government to the ever-accelerating crime problem in New York City. Instead of providing efficient police protection, the city's reaction has been to force the innocent citizen to stay out of crime-prone areas. Thus, after Central Park in Manhattan became a notorious center for muggings and other crime in the night hours, New York City's "solution" to the problem was to impose a curfew, banning use of the park in those hours. In short, if an innocent citizen wants to stay in Central Park at night, it is he who is arrested for disobeying the curfew; it is, of course, easier to arrest him than to rid the park of crime.

In short, while the long-held motto of private enterprise is that "the customer is always right," the implicit maxim of government operation is that the customer is always to be blamed.

Of course, the political bureaucrats have a standard response to the mounting complaints of poor and inefficient service: "The taxpayers must give us more money!" It is not enough that the "public sector," and its corollary in taxation, has been growing far more rapidly in this century than the national income. It is not enough that the flaws and headaches of government operation have multiplied along with the increased burden of the government budget. We are supposed to pour still more money down the governmental rathole!

The proper counter-argument to the political demand for more tax money is the question: "How is it that private enterprise doesn't have these problems?" How is it that hi-fi manufacturers or photocopy companies or computer firms or whatever do not have trouble finding capital to expand their output? Why don't they issue manifestoes denouncing the investing public for not providing them with more money to serve consumer needs? The answer is that consumers pay for the hi-fi sets or the photocopy machines or the computers, and that investors, as a result, know that they can make money by investing in those businesses. On the private market, firms that successfully serve the public find it easy to obtain capital for expansion; inefficient, unsuccessful firms do not, and eventually have to go out of business. But there is no profit-and-loss mechanism in government to induce investment in efficient operations and to penalize and drive the inefficient or obsolete ones out of business. There are no profits or losses in government operations inducing either expansion or contraction of operations. In government, then, no one truly "invests," and no one can insure that successful operations will expand and unsuccessful ones disappear. In contrast, government must raise its "capital" by literally conscripting it through the coercive mechanism of taxation.

Many people, including some government officials, think that these problems could be solved if only "government were run like a business." The government then sets up a pseudocorporate monopoly, run by government, which is supposed to set affairs on a "business basis." This has been done, for example, in the case of the Post Office now the U.S. "Postal Service" and in the case of the ever-crumbling and decaying New York City Transit Authority.1 The "corporations" are enjoined to end their chronic deficits and are allowed to float bonds on the bond market. It is true that direct users then would be taking some of the burden off the mass of taxpayers, which include users and nonusers alike. But there are fatal flaws inherent in any government operation which cannot be avoided by this pseudobusiness device. In the first place, government service is always a monopoly or semimonopoly. Often, as in the case of the Postal Service or the Transit Authority, it is a compulsory monopoly all or nearly all private competition is outlawed. The monopoly means that government service will be far more costly, higher priced, and poorer in quality than would be the case in the free market. Private enterprise gains a profit by cutting costs as much as it can. Government, which cannot go bankrupt or suffer losses in any case, need not cut costs; protected from competition as well as losses, it need only cut its service or simply raise prices. A second fatal flaw is that, try as it may, a government corporation can never be run as a business because its capital continues to be conscripted from the taxpayer. There is no way of avoiding that; the fact that the government corporation may raise bonds on the market still rests on the ultimate power of taxation to redeem these bonds.

Finally, there is another critical problem inherent in any government operation of a business. One of the reasons that private firms are models of efficiency is because the free market establishes prices which permit them to calculate, to figure out what their costs are and therefore what they must do to make profits and avoid losses. It is through this price system, as well as through the motivation to increase profits and avoid losses, that goods and services are properly allocated in the market among all the intricate branches and areas of production that make up the modern industrial "capitalist" economy. It is economic calculation that makes this marvel possible; in contrast, central planning, such as is attempted under socialism, is deprived of accurate pricing, and therefore cannot calculate costs and prices. This is the major reason that central socialist planning has increasingly proved to be a failure as the communist countries have become industrialized. It is because central planning cannot determine prices and costs with any accuracy that the communist countries of Eastern Europe have been moving rapidly away from socialist planning and toward a free-market economy.

If central planning, then, thrusts the economy into hopeless calculational chaos, and into irrational allocations and production operations, the advance of government activities inexorably introduces ever greater islands of such chaos into the economy, and makes calculation of costs and rational allocation of production resources more and more difficult.

As government operations expand and the market economy withers, the calculational chaos becomes more and more disruptive and the economy increasingly unworkable.

The ultimate libertarian program may be summed up in one phrase: the abolition of the public sector, the conversion of all operations and services performed by the government into activities performed voluntarily by the private-enterprise economy. Let us now turn from general considerations of government as contrasted with private activity to some of the major areas of government operation and how they could be performed by the free-market economy.

Emphasis mine. Read the ENTIRE book here: For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto, by Murray N. Rothbard

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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post #21 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzguru View Post

Sorry, the entire first section of this chapter is just too good not to post. It is extremely relevant to the conversation and explains much better than I could why the libertarian approach is the correct approach.



Emphasis mine. Read the ENTIRE book here: For a New Liberty: The Libertarian Manifesto, by Murray N. Rothbard

This is all I have to say on this.

"The difference is that we know that the free private market will supply these goods and services far more cheaply, in greater abundance, and of far higher quality than monopoly government does today."

Bull shit. We don't know that at all. This idiotic statement, as well as the rest of the Libertarian mindset, ignores real problems such as monopoly, collusion, market manipulation, supply constraint, monopsony, non-transparency... the list goes on.

All of these things pretty much guarantee that under an unregulated free market system, consumers will have to pay MORE for many goods and services (not all) than they do now.
post #22 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

This is all I have to say on this.

"The difference is that we know that the free private market will supply these goods and services far more cheaply, in greater abundance, and of far higher quality than monopoly government does today."

Bull shit. We don't know that at all.

Actually we have plenty of evidence to support this claim. You either don't see it or won't admit it.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #23 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Actually we have plenty of evidence to support this claim. You either don't see it or won't admit it.

You're right. I don't see it. Show me. Not theory. Not a cherry-picked selection. Show me how, for most goods and services, price to the consumer will be reduced. And then let me know how the free market deals with the problems I mentioned.
post #24 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

This idiotic statement, as well as the rest of the Libertarian mindset, ignores real problems such as monopoly, collusion, market manipulation, supply constraint, monopsony, non-transparency... the list goes on.

If those things you just listed are bad, why is it okay for government to do them?

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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post #25 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzguru View Post

If those things you just listed are bad, why is it okay for government to do them?

It's not. But if Government abuse of any of these things gets out of hand, we can hold them accountable through checks and balances and Democratic process. How do we hold business accountable?

And are you honestly saying these things are not bad for the consumer? Have you totally ignored industrial history?
post #26 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

It's not. But if Government abuse of any of these things gets out of hand, we can hold them accountable through checks and balances and Democratic process. How do we hold business accountable?

And are you honestly saying these things are not bad for the consumer? Have you totally ignored industrial history?

I am saying that government does ALL of those things and that the notions of "checks and balances" and the "Democratic process" have FAILED. Hold the government accountable? Have you looked around lately? The government does every single one of the things you listed.

Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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Malo periculosam, libertatem quam quietam servitutem.

(I prefer the tumult of liberty to the quiet of servitude.)

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post #27 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzguru View Post

I am saying that government does ALL of those things and that the notions of "checks and balances" and the "Democratic process" have FAILED.

How do you figure? I can guarantee you that without checks and balances and Democratic process, things would be far, far worse. Can you name an authoritarian government that has done better? Let's eliminate government in the equation... have you seen an anarchy, or a minimal government, that has done better? Have there never been anarchies in world history? Where have they all gone?

Prevention of things being worse is by no means a failure.
Quote:
Hold the government accountable? Have you looked around lately? The government does every single one of the things you listed.

And it would be worse if we took away their accountability.
post #28 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

How do you figure? I can guarantee you that without checks and balances and Democratic process, things would be far, far worse..

Actually, you can't guarantee that. You think you can.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #29 of 115
Thread Starter 
post #30 of 115
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ1970 View Post

Actually, you can't guarantee that. You think you can.

Again, I'm looking at this from an historical context.

I'll ask again.

Have there never been any anarchies in this world's history? Have there never been any minarchies?

Where have they gone?

Good night.
post #31 of 115
This conversation always divides people into the "government vs. private business" argument. But since (the US) government (at the federal level) is more or less ubiquitously controlled and bought by private/international (big) business, and "deregulation" is brought about by pressure from not only big international business, but unelected bodies such as the Federal Reserve (sic), the IMF and WTO etc., the argument is more or less moot.

The TARP funds (and more) were "approved" (ie, do it, or else) by Congress in 2008 to rescue the icons of capitalism from financial ruin; this fiasco was the direct result of broad-based criminal practices which ran amok in Wall Street as a result of the finance industry deregulation, a long term trend in recent years, which accelerated dramatically in 2004 under the Bush Administration.

Its the same everywhere: when certain people know that they do crime and they know that they won't, or even *cannot* get caught, they will do it. It's the gnarlier parts of human nature at work. It's the same everywhere. Thats why we have laws... to put a gloss of "civilized values" over the underlying law of the jungle.

"Behind every great fortune there lies a crime". Honoré de Balzec
"We've never made the case, or argued the case that somehow Osama bin Laden was directly involved in 9/11. That evidence has never been forthcoming". VP Cheney, 3/29/2006. Interview by Tony Snow
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"We've never made the case, or argued the case that somehow Osama bin Laden was directly involved in 9/11. That evidence has never been forthcoming". VP Cheney, 3/29/2006. Interview by Tony Snow
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post #32 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammi jo View Post

"Behind every great fortune there lies a crime". Honoré de Balzec

This statement is almost certainly a lie or, at best, conjecture.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #33 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammi jo View Post

This conversation always divides people into the "government vs. private business" argument. But since (the US) government (at the federal level) is more or less ubiquitously controlled and bought by private/international (big) business, and "deregulation" is brought about by pressure from not only big international business, but unelected bodies such as the Federal Reserve (sic), the IMF and WTO etc., the argument is more or less moot.

But the root cause here is giving some entity (the government) some apparently legitimate (and large amount of) power that becomes available for sale. Tonton's solution is just say "it's not for sale." I'm saying don't create a beast that can be bought and sold...because if you create it...it will be commandeered. The common problem of regulatory capture is frequently forgotten, ignored or even denied by the big government folks. Give people power and give it the air of legitimacy and it will be co-opted...it will be abused. History has shown this.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #34 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by sammi jo View Post

This conversation always divides people into the "government vs. private business" argument. But since (the US) government (at the federal level) is more or less ubiquitously controlled and bought by private/international (big) business, and "deregulation" is brought about by pressure from not only big international business, but unelected bodies such as the Federal Reserve (sic), the IMF and WTO etc., the argument is more or less moot.

The TARP funds (and more) were "approved" (ie, do it, or else) by Congress in 2008 to rescue the icons of capitalism from financial ruin; this fiasco was the direct result of broad-based criminal practices which ran amok in Wall Street as a result of the finance industry deregulation, a long term trend in recent years, which accelerated dramatically in 2004 under the Bush Administration.

Its the same everywhere: when certain people know that they do crime and they know that they won't, or even *cannot* get caught, they will do it. It's the gnarlier parts of human nature at work. It's the same everywhere. Thats why we have laws... to put a gloss of "civilized values" over the underlying law of the jungle.

"Behind every great fortune there lies a crime". Honoré de Balzec

I agree with all but the part I've emphasized. That part is factually inaccurate. Regulations simply failed to keep up with new financial instruments. Government failed to keep up with the potential consequences of a housing meltdown. In fact, the Bush Administration was warning on this very thing for about two years prior to Fannie and Freddie basically going broke. They were met with staunch resistance by Democrats like Barney Frank and Maxine Waters, who insisted Fannie and Freddie were not overexposed. And the crisis had its roots at the sub-prime level. The Clinton administration actually pushed banks to make loans they knew were horrible bets, all under the guise of the Community Redevelopment Act. This problem started as far back as the late 1970's.

But the problem here is not Capitalism per se. One could argue that government actually caused the housing meltdown with artificially low rates, programs for people that really shouldn't have qualified for loans, and a (virtual) Federal guarantee on nearly ALL loans in the US.
I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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I can only please one person per day.  Today is not your day.  Tomorrow doesn't look good either.  
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post #35 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

How do you propose private regulation and testing be enforced? By private militia?

This is where your ignorance is on display. Underwriters Laboratories does an excellent job of product testing and safety.

Consider this question. Do you want the definition of "organic food" to fall under political influence? If it falls under the realm of law and politicians it will be political. Wouldn't it be better if a group of organic farmers in California define it and copyright "Certified Organic By OGC" it would have more meaning than if the FDA stamps everything "organic"?
post #36 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by FloorJack View Post

This is where your ignorance is on display. Underwriters Laboratories does an excellent job of product testing and safety.

NFPA is another terrific example.

The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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The state is nothing more than a criminal gang writ large.

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post #37 of 115
Here's another. Snell Foundation

Some argue that Snell's standards are too aggressive and the double impact test they mandate makes helmets too rigid for street use. Also I would add that Snell changed their standards so that a helmet could meet european and DOT standards at the same time. That's what you get with an open system that can evolved standards over time.
post #38 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by FloorJack View Post

Here's another. Snell Foundation

Some argue that Snell's standards are too aggressive and the double impact test they mandate makes helmets too rigid for street use. Also I would add that Snell changed their standards so that a helmet could meet european and DOT standards at the same time. That's what you get with an open system that can evolved standards over time.

Just to really jam it home. DOT does not test helmets. They have manufactures submit test results. Snell requires manufactures to submit helmets for testing.
post #39 of 115
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

So I guess a policy that leads to dead babies because of melamine in milk powder is a better solution... Whatever gets your goat. Except we're talking about dead babies here, so fuck your goat. I want my milk powder regulated and tested, TYVM. Agricultural subsidies are another issue altogether. If you can't see the difference and how one can separated from the other then God help you, please.

No company could earn a profit, produce a better product or get ahead by producing superior milk or watermelons or what have you. The only choice is dead babies and exploding watermelons or government control?

False dilemma.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

How do you propose private regulation and testing be enforced? By private militia?

Most movie and music content rating systems right now are completely industry created and enforced. It's the FCC for example that thinks we will all die if Janet's boob ends up on the screen for one second. Other have already started noting other examples. Most of what is done in high tech is almost completely devoid of government control and standards are achieved by industry consensus and submitted to various industry boards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

One thing that never ceases to amaze me is that anti-regulation folk scream from the top of their lungs that government can't be trusted, but fail to admit that private enterprise can be trusted even less.

The fact is, no one can be trusted, period. Which is why regulation exists.

Government can't be trusted. True. Which is why we have checks and balances on one level, and democratic process on the other. Market forces are a much weaker substitute, as they are easily obscured by lack of transparency, collusion, market manipulation, and abandonment of responsibility.

Government sins are rather long and strong ones. They are also much harder to hold accountable. Government declared a man to be property. Government put people into internment camps. Government has military bases across the globe and is fighting three wars.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tonton View Post

History is on my side. Don't like What FDR did? Vote him out of office. Can't vote him out of office because of political inertia? Congress enacts term limits. Don't like what BP did? Oh, well.

Let's pretend like you have a counter-argument, instead of a dismissal.

Vote someone out of office when they stack the Supreme Court, gerrymander the district lines, allow dead voters to vote or people with no ID or accountability within their own election process?

You've not helped your argument here.

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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post #40 of 115
Here is an exact example of what regulation is often giving us, crony capitalism.

The government controls the cell radio frequencies. You have AT&T, T-mobile and their union all in favor of the merger. You have basically the competition in opposition.

Let's see what the government does here.

"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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"During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." -George Orwell

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