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Communism

Posted Nov 15, '13 at 8:18pm

stinkyjim

stinkyjim

485 posts

From my understanding, a communistic country is a country with currency, social status, and everybody is treated equal (sexual orientation, race, and religion doesn't matter, and everybody receives the same amount of food and shelter regardless of how much work they do.
What is the problem with this? Besides the fact that people would have no motivation to work (which could be remedied with prison), and people only doing the minimum amount of work to receive their food (which is what led the fall of communism), I think it would solve multiple problems in the government we currently have.
The only reason I can fathom for such hatred towards communism is that people who currently hold power within the government would no longer be able to keep their positions of power, and all of the rich people in the country would lose a massive amount of their income (leading to massive chaos, most likely).
However, what if we imagine that we could start a new country on an island. This island would have everything we could possibly need for thousands of people if rationed correctly. Communism would be the ideal government in this situation, wouldn't it? Everybody is treated equal, everybody gets the same amount of resources as everybody else, everybody works together to build a thriving country, everybody has a home, etc.. There will always be someone that will try to seize power/become corrupt in order to get more resources, etc.. That's inevitable in any government or society.
Why does most of the world (the United States in general) hate communism so much? There's no reason, other than greed.

 

Posted Nov 15, '13 at 8:19pm

stinkyjim

stinkyjim

485 posts

From my understanding, a communistic country is a country withOUT currency, social status
 

Posted Nov 15, '13 at 8:45pm

NoNameC68

NoNameC68

5,297 posts

Knight

What is the problem with this? Besides the fact that people would have no motivation to work (which could be remedied with prison), and people only doing the minimum amount of work to receive their food (which is what led the fall of communism), I think it would solve multiple problems in the government we currently have.


People shouldn't be forced to work, they should be motivated to work.

There are just so many things that can go wrong with forcing people to work. In fact, the act of forcing people to work in-itself is literally slavery.

"However, what if we imagine that we could start a new country on an island. This island would have everything we could possibly need for thousands of people if rationed correctly."

This leads to a few questions.

1. Who creates these goods?
2. What motivation is there for people to create goods?

" Everybody is treated equal, everybody gets the same amount of resources as everybody else, everybody works together to build a thriving country, everybody has a home, etc.. There will always be someone that will try to seize power/become corrupt in order to get more resources, etc.. That's inevitable in any government or society."

If you want more of something, can you work harder for it?

No.

And resources are limited, how do you determine their use? Supply and demand is the best system we currently have to determine the value of goods and services.

Many people believe we should use the rarer and harder to obtain materials to create goods that last a long time. But this can lead to waste. We don't need to use the finest metals to create razorblades. We don't need to use up the rarest of fabrics for standard T-Shirts. We don't need to use finer plastics that require more resources to create for our remote controls or toys.

But we can't be too stingy with materials either.

Supply and demand is a great way of making sure materials aren't used too quickly. The more scarce an item in demand becomes, the more expensive it becomes. This creates incentive to find cheaper alternatives to creating quality goods.
 

Posted Nov 15, '13 at 9:37pm

stinkyjim

stinkyjim

485 posts

You make some great points, NoNameC68.

People shouldn't be forced to work, they should be motivated to work. There are just so many things that can go wrong with forcing people to work. In fact, the act of forcing people to work in-itself is literally slavery.


I wouldn't call it slavery, as you are working to create/build/produce something that would improve the lives of yourself and those of your community. Your work is rewarded by being able to live in a house, have all the food you need, etc.. This would eliminate poverty, homeless people, hunger, etc.


1. Who creates these goods?
2. What motivation is there for people to create goods?


The people living on the island of course. Let's change the situation a bit: If you and several people were stranded on an island, what would you do? You would work on building a shelter, fire, and gathering food. Suppose a few weeks go by, and there's no rescue planes/boats in sight. You continue to build and gather. As weeks turn to months, you find yourself in a village; Everybody gets the same amount of food and water per day, everybody has a hut, everybody is treated equal in order to survive. Is this not a communist village at this point?

If you want more of something, can you work harder for it? No.


The entire idea of communism is to allow everybody to have the same amount of stuff as everybody else. Working harder on the farms would raise the overall amount of food available. Let's make it simple: Say you milked 250 gallons of milk, divide that by the amount of population and then take your ration. Working harder, you milk 500 gallons of milk. In theory, you would get twice as much milk than before.

Many people believe we should use the rarer and harder to obtain materials to create goods that last a long time. But this can lead to waste. We don't need to use the finest metals to create razorblades. We don't need to use up the rarest of fabrics for standard T-Shirts. We don't need to use finer plastics that require more resources to create for our remote controls or toys.But we can't be too stingy with materials either.
Supply and demand is a great way of making sure materials aren't used too quickly. The more scarce an item in demand becomes, the more expensive it becomes. This creates incentive to find cheaper alternatives to creating quality goods.


I'll admit, I don't have anything to counter with this point. Supply and demand is certainly a good system, and communism probably wouldn't work very well on a large scale (as we have seen with the fall of Soviet Russia). I suppose that puts a hole in my argument, but on a smaller scale I don't see how communism could be a bad thing.
 

Posted Nov 15, '13 at 11:13pm

NoNameC68

NoNameC68

5,297 posts

Knight

I wouldn't call it slavery, as you are working to create/build/produce something that would improve the lives of yourself and those of your community. Your work is rewarded by being able to live in a house, have all the food you need, etc.. This would eliminate poverty, homeless people, hunger, etc.


What's the difference between being forced to work, and working out of necessity?

The simple idea behind communism is - everyone works, everyone lives well. But it's honestly not that simple - at all. We have different types of work, different needs, different wants, different skills, etc.

The people living on the island of course. Let's change the situation a bit: If you and several people were stranded on an island, what would you do? You would work on building a shelter, fire, and gathering food. Suppose a few weeks go by, and there's no rescue planes/boats in sight. You continue to build and gather. As weeks turn to months, you find yourself in a village; Everybody gets the same amount of food and water per day, everybody has a hut, everybody is treated equal in order to survive. Is this not a communist village at this point?


Everyone in the village would be working out of necessity. If someone within the village decided to weave together balls for other people to play with, would he be forced to create balls for everyone to enjoy? And what motivation would he have to create balls for others to enjoy if he isn't going to obtain anything more in return?

Let's say this ball maker quits his farming job to create balls for other people to enjoy - how would the rest of the village react? Perhaps some people would grow bitter, because they need food more than they need balls. Why should a ball maker get paid the same amounts as a farmer?

In a system of free trade, the ball maker will only succeed if there's a demand for balls. If there is a demand, he'll be able to profit off of making them for others - who will trade their goods for the balls. If there isn't a demand, he'll find a new job such as farming. realistically, ball making would more likely be a hobby in which he uses his materials to create said good - and people who want the balls would trade for them since the ball maker did use up his own time and resources.

And if you say, "He didn't use his resources, he used the community's shared resources", then we run into a new problem. Why should the ball maker have access to the communities resources? The community might not want a man using up valuable resources for his balls. Now we end up in a situation in which the man is allowed to use the resources against the communities will - or the ball maker isn't allowed access to the resources and no balls can be made and there's no way for the man to obtain resources what-so-ever.

In a free trade system, the ball maker can trade for those resources. If the resources are scarce and valuable, then the ball maker must trade something of similar worth.

The entire idea of communism is to allow everybody to have the same amount of stuff as everybody else.


Why focus on equality? Why not focus on well-being?

Free-trade doesn't focus on equality because not everyone has the same standards of living. Free-trade focuses on people making a living off of... trade! People aren't rewarded for how hard they work, they're rewarded for how much they provide the community with what they need or want.

Entire books have been written to delve into how and why free trade works, it would take me my entire weekend just to scratch the surface.

Let's make it simple: Say you milked 250 gallons of milk, divide that by the amount of population and then take your ration. Working harder, you milk 500 gallons of milk. In theory, you would get twice as much milk than before.


Let's say you milk 1,000 gallons of milk for 100 people. Each person gets 10 gallons of milk. If you want 20 gallons of milk, you would need to milk 2,000 gallons. Want twice as much milk? Milk twice as hard!

Let's say it takes 1 hours to milk 25 gallons. That's 40 hours of work for 1,000 gallons.. That's 24 minutes to produce 10 gallons of milk.

If you need 20 gallons of milk, you need to work for 80 HOURS! Sure, everyone else also gets 20 gallons of milk as well, but what if they don't need 20 gallons of milk? What if you're the only one who needs 20 gallons?

What if you enjoy cooking for a living, but you're not a farmer? You get 10 gallons of milk per week, but you need 20 gallons of milk. How do you obtain the extra 10 gallons?

I'll admit, I don't have anything to counter with this point. Supply and demand is certainly a good system, and communism probably wouldn't work very well on a large scale (as we have seen with the fall of Soviet Russia). I suppose that puts a hole in my argument, but on a smaller scale I don't see how communism could be a bad thing.


Refer to my response to your island question.

Understand, free-trade doesn't prohibit people from sharing willingly.
 

Posted Nov 16, '13 at 2:43am

EmperorPalpatine

EmperorPalpatine

9,485 posts

I wouldn't call it slavery, as you are working to create/build/produce something that would improve the lives of yourself and those of your community.

How does the end result change the work method?

Your work is rewarded by being able to live in a house, have all the food you need, etc..

Is that not how slaves were rewarded?

This would eliminate poverty, homeless people, hunger, etc.

Is that not one of the reasons slavery was considered justified?
 

Posted Nov 17, '13 at 1:40pm

FeHorse

FeHorse

4 posts

Some are more equal than others.

 

Posted Nov 18, '13 at 3:21am

Kennethhartanto

Kennethhartanto

248 posts

How does the end result change the work method?


Well, in slavery you were working for someone. that someone can treat you in any way he/she wants. in communism, you work for an entire state or country. that country can't treat you in any way it wants, because it is obliged to give you something in equal terms with other people.

Is that not how slaves were rewarded?


Actually, slaves are not seen at an equal terms with the "masters", but the people at a communist country have equality in every parts of life, including a same status with everyone in the country ( a politician is not higher than commoners )

Is that not one of the reasons slavery was considered justified?


this is where you are wrong. slavery was only justified with social discrimination and apartheid. it was NEVER justified with eliminating poverty, homeless people, or lack of food in the enslaved society. To an imperialistic country, do you think they care about the well being of the enslaved society? Try asking the Nazis, Napoleon, Cortez, Pizarro, Van de Bosch, Daendels or Thomas Raffles
 

Posted Nov 18, '13 at 5:38am

pangtongshu

pangtongshu

9,890 posts

Well, in slavery you were working for someone. that someone can treat you in any way he/she wants. in communism, you work for an entire state or country. that country can't treat you in any way it wants, because it is obliged to give you something in equal terms with other people.


And in slavery many of the slaves are working for food and shelter which is given out of obligation by the owners to keep their slaves alive and able bodied.

It seems you are arguing that the difference between the two is one is a collective group for an agenda, while the other is an explicitly controlled group for an agenda, but the agenda being of a master.
But, the communist group is being implicitly controlled.

Also, the idea of equal reward for job input...it gives equal value to every job even when such equal value is truly not a thing. A basket weaver holds little to, say, a surgeon, yet they both must work in order to receive the same outcome.

this is where you are wrong. slavery was only justified with social discrimination and apartheid.


What of the original usage of slavery in which there was no discrimination for the slaves? Either you were captured in war or born into it.
 

Posted Nov 18, '13 at 9:00am

EmperorPalpatine

EmperorPalpatine

9,485 posts

"Slavery is good for slaves

This argument teaches that slaves lack the ability to run their own lives and are therefore better-off and happier in a system where their lives are run by others."

Source.

"The following arguments were put forth in Southern books, pamphlets and newspapers to defend the institution of slavery:
Slavery was good for the slaves; the slaveowners took on the burden of caring for the interests of inferior beings, seeing that they would be fed, clothed and given religious instruction."

Source.

 
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