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Drugs and the Transformation of Capitalism

charleslb
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11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/12/2014 1:57:04 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
Yes, this one is relatively short and a tad less controversial. We'll see if this appeases any of my critics.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/12/2014 3:57:24 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
And yes, this is an appropriate topic for the economics section. Capitalism is far more than merely a system of production or a kind of market, it's also the morally and mentally unhealthy social state of affairs and the culture that its inherent inhuman dynamics and priorities, its overstimulation of competition and promotion of egoism, and its economism, materialism, and consumerism inevitably and self-destructively spawn.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/13/2014 1:08:58 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/13/2014 5:11:16 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Someone please do something about all of the bleeping spam in the economics section!
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/13/2014 5:13:17 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Check this one out everyone, http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/14/2014 3:45:13 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/13/2014 1:08:58 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
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11/14/2014 7:48:18 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/14/2014 3:45:13 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/13/2014 1:08:58 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/15/2014 12:58:13 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/14/2014 7:48:18 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/14/2014 3:45:13 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/13/2014 1:08:58 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/15/2014 3:48:46 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/15/2014 12:58:13 AM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/14/2014 7:48:18 PM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/14/2014 3:45:13 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/13/2014 1:08:58 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/12/2014 11:49:10 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/12/2014 1:43:54 AM, charleslb wrote:
Let's cop to the obvious, you know that a society is sick when too many of its citizens need to medicate themselves. Oh yes, the social and spiritual ills of our society do indeed have much to do with its drug problem, it would be rather superficial as well as moralistic to merely blame individuals. Quite simply, the axiologically bleak existential state of affairs that our modern capitalist form of society has given rise to; the dominated-by-materialistic-values, one-dimensionally-focused-on-economics life that it offers isn't terribly conducive to knowing the kind of self-actualization, fulfillment, sense of importance, and joy that would be worth staying sober for, so it's hardly surprising that a great many of us these days fall prey to street or prescription drug use and alcoholism. Yes, that so many of us are seeking an escape from the poignant reality created for us by capitalism through chemical means, or video games, or sex, or television, or other diversions and excesses should be considered a pretty good indication, a telltale symptom that our capitalist form of life is not exactly "the good life". Not in any deep and humanistic sense of a good life.

The sociological, moral, and spiritual pathologies of our society have indeed destroyed a great many individual lives, and threaten the eventual destruction of civilization. It's certainly long overdue that we begin to take a very critical look at our capitalist form of society, and seriously explore and develop a more viable alternative. Well, there's not much of a real choice, staying the course of capitalism means remaining on a path to the dustbin of history. Capitalism is of course going to end up there one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it.

Yes, the signs of capitalist society's sickness unto death are all around us, these signs include our neighbors and co-workers on Prozac and crack, our neighbors, friends, and family members drowning their quiet desperation in whiskey and vodka, and our clinically depressed and otherwise dysfunctional fellow citizens. Capitalism is clearly bad for the human soul, this and its deleterious effects on the ecosphere, will eventually prove to be its downfall, will force us toward its transcenence and negation. Toward the liberation of our lives from capital, from the worship of the almighty dollar, from consumerism and affluenza, from a poverty that preoccupies us with economics, and from alienation. Our alienation from ourselves, from authenticity, from our fellow human beings, and from our society caused by the exploitative nature of work under capitalism, by the perversion of our labor into something owned and controlled by bosses and businessmen rather than an expression of our creativity, and by the economic individualism and egoism promoted by capitalism.

But of course this profoundly spiritually injurious alienation and the general spiritual emptiness of late capitalist existence is something that we're socialized and acculturated to take for granted and accept as normal. Those who are unable to do so are viewed and dismissed as maladjusted, and as suffering from purely personal problems. But the ranks of the maladjusted are growing exponentially because what we're being asked to adjust ourselves to is unwholesome, is adverse to a well-rounded kind of human well-being. Ultimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate or transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life. And we all know what this form of life is called. It's simply this form of life that I advocate.

It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.

Again, I never implied that there's a single cause for drug abuse.

The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

And this is likewise nothing but your subjective opinion.

The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.

Not really.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/15/2014 4:14:33 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Wow, the spam in the economics section is getting quite ridiculously out of hand.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/15/2014 6:23:04 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Some of you might perhaps be interested in this,

http://www.debate.org...

http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/15/2014 7:33:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/15/2014 3:48:46 AM, charleslb wrote:
It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.

Again, I never implied that there's a single cause for drug abuse.

That's not what your OP suggests.

The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

And this is likewise nothing but your subjective opinion.

1) The apocalyptic visions of the end of capitalism is nothing but wishful thinking.
2) The whole talk about "a more authentically human form of life" is also wishful thinking. One would think that no one is happy and content and no one reaches fulfillment in the West.


The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.

Not really.

Since your response is aimed at me, and I can't tell what is the logical connection of your reply to my post, I think that I am the one who decides whether or not your response is confusing.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/16/2014 2:36:10 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/15/2014 7:33:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/15/2014 3:48:46 AM, charleslb wrote:
It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.

Again, I never implied that there's a single cause for drug abuse.

That's not what your OP suggests.

To your mind.


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

And this is likewise nothing but your subjective opinion.

1) The apocalyptic visions of the end of capitalism is nothing but wishful thinking.

"Apocalyptic" is not at all a felicitous adjective to use to characterize my vision. And there's certainly a distinction with a difference between wishful thinking and guarded optimism, the latter being what I personally go in for.

2) The whole talk about "a more authentically human form of life" is also wishful thinking. One would think that no one is happy and content and no one reaches fulfillment in the West.

Alas a great many don't. One can simplistically blame the victim, or one can take a hard, critical look at the bigger socioeconomic, structural picture, at the existential conditions of economic adversity & struggle, outright poverty, political disempowerment, objectification, alienation, and dehumanization that the proletarian and subproletarian classes, i.e. the vast majority of humankind, are systematically subjected to.


The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.

Not really.

Since your response is aimed at me, and I can't tell what is the logical connection of your reply to my post, I think that I am the one who decides whether or not your response is confusing.

Simply because you find my response confusing doesn't mean that it's actually inherently confusing or poorly constructed. I would suggest that you give it another, closer read.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/16/2014 2:40:02 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
Posts: 4,740
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11/16/2014 5:07:19 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Let me simplify. Some of us are in favor of a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life. And those of us, such as yours truly, who are in favor of taking such a truly civilized way of being together in the world to its rigorously logical conclusion are called communists. This is our eminently leftward location on the political-philosophical spectrum. On the opposite side of the spectrum are individuals with a macho and an egoistic streak in their mentality that considers the idea of a kinder and gentler society namby-pamby, and that's staunchly in favor of a nation of self-interestedly individualistic "entrepreneurs", undemocratically dominated by the strongest, most aggressive capitalist fat cats. Of course they rationalize and justify such an appalling worldview in terms of freedom and personal autonomy, but what it actually amounts to is social Darwinism in new wineskins. These individuals are euphemistically called "libertarians", conservatives, and neoliberals.

Well, to riff off of the song, one can imagine no possessions, no need for greed or hunger, a genuine brotherhood of man. One can imagine all the people sharing all the world. Or one can resign oneself to, and ideologize and idealize capitalism, i.e. a form of life in which possessions and commodities take priority over human beings and human values. In which greed is deemed to be good. In which hunger is appallingly widespread. In which the vision of the brotherhood of man is laughed out of court and everyone exists as atomized and alienated individuals. In which the one percent lock up and control most of the world's wealth, and the rest of the people share in the experience of economic hardship and privation. Again, if you're the former you're a fellow communist, if you're the latter you're a Republican, Tea Partier, or a "libertarian". You may say that those of us who are the former are dreamers, but we're not isolated nuts. I sincerely hope someday you will join us, and the world will live as one.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/16/2014 8:21:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/16/2014 2:36:10 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/15/2014 7:33:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/15/2014 3:48:46 AM, charleslb wrote:
It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.

Again, I never implied that there's a single cause for drug abuse.

That's not what your OP suggests.

To your mind.


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

And this is likewise nothing but your subjective opinion.

1) The apocalyptic visions of the end of capitalism is nothing but wishful thinking.

"Apocalyptic" is not at all a felicitous adjective to use to characterize my vision. And there's certainly a distinction with a difference between wishful thinking and guarded optimism, the latter being what I personally go in for.

"Apocalyptic" might not be an adjective which you would like to be used to describe your visions about the end of capitalism, but it is exact. The same goes for the description of your solutions as being "wishful thinking." You claim that when communism replaces capitalism a new age in human history will be ushered in, one in which all human beings will be able to live in "authenticity" and will have meaningful lives--to call that "guarded optimism" is a violation of language.

2) The whole talk about "a more authentically human form of life" is also wishful thinking. One would think that no one is happy and content and no one reaches fulfillment in the West.

Alas a great many don't. One can simplistically blame the victim, or one can take a hard, critical look at the bigger socioeconomic, structural picture, at the existential conditions of economic adversity & struggle, outright poverty, political disempowerment, objectification, alienation, and dehumanization that the proletarian and subproletarian classes, i.e. the vast majority of humankind, are systematically subjected to.

1) No one here is blaming the victim.
2) A lot of the poverty and misery in our world is not actually the cause of capitalism quite a bit of it are pre-existing conditions. Most of the rest is accidental rather than systematic.
3) One need not be a communist to be able to see where capitalism has gone wrong and to wish to correct some of the more egregious effects of uninhibited capitalism: alienation, disempowerment, etc.
4) Existential questions are irrelevant, i.e. the whole thing about "objectification".
5) There is no dehumanization of the proletariat in the West, though it does exist in the Third World--most of it still feudal.
6) Dehumanization of the lumpenproletariat will not necessarily go away with capitalism.


The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.

Not really.

Since your response is aimed at me, and I can't tell what is the logical connection of your reply to my post, I think that I am the one who decides whether or not your response is confusing.

Simply because you find my response confusing doesn't mean that it's actually inherently confusing or poorly constructed. I would suggest that you give it another, closer read.

I have read it closely, but I am still not sure what it is you are asking. If you had just reformulated your post when I asked you to, I would have already replied to your question.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
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11/16/2014 8:24:50 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/16/2014 8:21:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
A lot of the poverty and misery in our world is not actually the cause of capitalism ...

A more than sufficient amount is.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
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11/17/2014 4:57:44 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/16/2014 8:21:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/16/2014 2:36:10 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/15/2014 7:33:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/15/2014 3:48:46 AM, charleslb wrote:
It is rather charming to encounter people who think that depression, drug abuse, and mental illness are all the results of capitalism, and that they can be done away with as soon as one does away with capitalism.

Appeal to extremes. You're attempting to make out that I'm claiming that the epidemic of drug dependency, mental ill-being, and general dissatisfaction with life in our society is entirely due to the life-system that capitalism gives rise to. Of course I recognize the existence of, and do not deny the significance of other factors. I'm not actually one to think in simplistic terms of single causes. Perhaps you're projecting your own intellectual tendencies again.

In the first paragraph of your OP--which reads like a sermon from a preacher--you say that the reason why so many people have to take medication is, in essence, because they live in a capitalist society.

Did I in fact say or suggest that it's the exclusive reason for everyone?

You imply that's the reason why most people need it.

Again, I never implied that there's a single cause for drug abuse.

That's not what your OP suggests.

To your mind.


The tone of the OP ranges from the puritanically narrow--the condemnation of hedonistic pleasure--to the religiously apocalyptic, passing through the nonsensical and absurd.

These are merely the interpretations that your own mentality reduces my views to.

1) The condemnation of hedonistic pleasure: you say that people watch TV, play video games, and have sex because they want to escape from reality, not because these things are enjoyable. 2) The religiously apocalyptic: "... Capitalism is of course going to end up there [the aforementioned dustbin of history] one way or another, but we can still choose to not let it take human civilization with it" and "[u]ltimately capitalist society will be filled with so many drug-dependent, dysfunctional, and discontent individuals pressuring it to change, will become such a basket case rudely awakened to its own pathological nature, that it will either catastrophically break down and degenerate"; these are self explanatory. 3) Finally, the nonsensical and absurd: "transform upward into its negation, into a quest for a more authentically human form or life."

And you have difficulty with all of these observations?! Hmm, methinks someone's bias in favor of capitalism is showing again.

They are not observations they are nothing but delusional rants.

And this is likewise nothing but your subjective opinion.

1) The apocalyptic visions of the end of capitalism is nothing but wishful thinking.

"Apocalyptic" is not at all a felicitous adjective to use to characterize my vision. And there's certainly a distinction with a difference between wishful thinking and guarded optimism, the latter being what I personally go in for.

"Apocalyptic" might not be an adjective which you would like to be used to describe your visions about the end of capitalism, but it is exact. The same goes for the description of your solutions as being "wishful thinking." You claim that when communism replaces capitalism a new age in human history will be ushered in, one in which all human beings will be able to live in "authenticity" and will have meaningful lives--to call that "guarded optimism" is a violation of language.

2) The whole talk about "a more authentically human form of life" is also wishful thinking. One would think that no one is happy and content and no one reaches fulfillment in the West.

Alas a great many don't. One can simplistically blame the victim, or one can take a hard, critical look at the bigger socioeconomic, structural picture, at the existential conditions of economic adversity & struggle, outright poverty, political disempowerment, objectification, alienation, and dehumanization that the proletarian and subproletarian classes, i.e. the vast majority of humankind, are systematically subjected to.

1) No one here is blaming the victim.
2) A lot of the poverty and misery in our world is not actually the cause of capitalism quite a bit of it are pre-existing conditions. Most of the rest is accidental rather than systematic.
3) One need not be a communist to be able to see where capitalism has gone wrong and to wish to correct some of the more egregious effects of uninhibited capitalism: alienation, disempowerment, etc.
4) Existential questions are irrelevant, i.e. the whole thing about "objectification".
5) There is no dehumanization of the proletariat in the West, though it does exist in the Third World--most of it still feudal.
6) Dehumanization of the lumpenproletariat will not necessarily go away with capitalism.


The OP also fails to note that medication is necessary for people suffering from certain conditions, and that those individuals who consume them are much better off with them than without them.

I don't deny the legitimacy of certain medications for certain conditions. For heaven's sake, I'm a communist, not a Scientologist!

Then what the hell is the point of this? Do you want to talk about mental illness? or about the (ab)use of medication by certain patients? or (more likely) are you just seeking for an excuse to beat your b"te noire?

Hmm, are you arguing that because I don't simplemindedly condemn all medication that therefore the OP can't contain any legitimate points? This makes no sense whatsoever.

Reformulate your point, as it stands it is rather confusing.

Not really.

Since your response is aimed at me, and I can't tell what is the logical connection of your reply to my post, I think that I am the one who decides whether or not your response is confusing.

Simply because you find my response confusing doesn't mean that it's actually inherently confusing or poorly constructed. I would suggest that you give it another, closer read.

I have read it closely, but I am still not sure what it is you are asking. If you had just reformulated your post when I asked you to, I would have already replied to your question.

http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
HououinKyouma
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11/17/2014 7:38:39 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/16/2014 5:07:19 PM, charleslb wrote:
Let me simplify. Some of us are in favor of a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life. And those of us, such as yours truly, who are in favor of taking such a truly civilized way of being together in the world to its rigorously logical conclusion are called communists. This is our eminently leftward location on the political-philosophical spectrum. On the opposite side of the spectrum are individuals with a macho and an egoistic streak in their mentality that considers the idea of a kinder and gentler society namby-pamby, and that's staunchly in favor of a nation of self-interestedly individualistic "entrepreneurs", undemocratically dominated by the strongest, most aggressive capitalist fat cats. Of course they rationalize and justify such an appalling worldview in terms of freedom and personal autonomy, but what it actually amounts to is social Darwinism in new wineskins. These individuals are euphemistically called "libertarians", conservatives, and neoliberals.

Well, to riff off of the song, one can imagine no possessions, no need for greed or hunger, a genuine brotherhood of man. One can imagine all the people sharing all the world. Or one can resign oneself to, and ideologize and idealize capitalism, i.e. a form of life in which possessions and commodities take priority over human beings and human values. In which greed is deemed to be good. In which hunger is appallingly widespread. In which the vision of the brotherhood of man is laughed out of court and everyone exists as atomized and alienated individuals. In which the one percent lock up and control most of the world's wealth, and the rest of the people share in the experience of economic hardship and privation. Again, if you're the former you're a fellow communist, if you're the latter you're a Republican, Tea Partier, or a "libertarian". You may say that those of us who are the former are dreamers, but we're not isolated nuts. I sincerely hope someday you will join us, and the world will live as one.

Problems with your post:

1) According to your definition of what a communist is everyone from the centre-right to the left is a communist.
2) It is psychologically absurd to speak of a supposed opposition between selfishness and selflessness--that is primitive psychology.
3) You still conceive of greed as being something that is solely destructive.
4) A world where no one owns anything sounds like hell to me.
5) I think that even in the Utopia that you desire most people would still prioritize possessions and commodities--somehow that is bad, though I don't see why.
6) You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is inherited rather than made, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem.
7) If in your vision of paradise one is no longer able to be indifferent to others, then I reject it.

Now, there is nothing really wrong with your first paragraph, the real problems begin with the second paragraph.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
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11/18/2014 1:15:48 AM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/17/2014 7:38:39 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/16/2014 5:07:19 PM, charleslb wrote:
Let me simplify. Some of us are in favor of a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life. And those of us, such as yours truly, who are in favor of taking such a truly civilized way of being together in the world to its rigorously logical conclusion are called communists. This is our eminently leftward location on the political-philosophical spectrum. On the opposite side of the spectrum are individuals with a macho and an egoistic streak in their mentality that considers the idea of a kinder and gentler society namby-pamby, and that's staunchly in favor of a nation of self-interestedly individualistic "entrepreneurs", undemocratically dominated by the strongest, most aggressive capitalist fat cats. Of course they rationalize and justify such an appalling worldview in terms of freedom and personal autonomy, but what it actually amounts to is social Darwinism in new wineskins. These individuals are euphemistically called "libertarians", conservatives, and neoliberals.

Well, to riff off of the song, one can imagine no possessions, no need for greed or hunger, a genuine brotherhood of man. One can imagine all the people sharing all the world. Or one can resign oneself to, and ideologize and idealize capitalism, i.e. a form of life in which possessions and commodities take priority over human beings and human values. In which greed is deemed to be good. In which hunger is appallingly widespread. In which the vision of the brotherhood of man is laughed out of court and everyone exists as atomized and alienated individuals. In which the one percent lock up and control most of the world's wealth, and the rest of the people share in the experience of economic hardship and privation. Again, if you're the former you're a fellow communist, if you're the latter you're a Republican, Tea Partier, or a "libertarian". You may say that those of us who are the former are dreamers, but we're not isolated nuts. I sincerely hope someday you will join us, and the world will live as one.

Problems with your post:

1) According to your definition of what a communist is everyone from the centre-right to the left is a communist.

Centre-right folks don't envision or advocate the fundamental overthrow and negation of the entire capitalist life-system.

2) It is psychologically absurd to speak of a supposed opposition between selfishness and selflessness--that is primitive psychology.

By your lights perhaps. Yes, of course altruism never will, doesn't need to, and shouldn't entirely offset or snuff out egoism, the aim of life is after all self-actualization, and therefore one shouldn't think in excessively Manichaean terms of selflessness vs. selfishness. In fact, the moderation of egoism and the promotion of pro-social attitudes and values that will characterize communist society will promote human beings working in an interdependent fashion to optimize their individual self-actualization. So yes, social altruism and individualism aren't entirely or fundamentally at cross purposes. However, the kind of competitive and adversarial egoism fostered by capitalism, by its economic dynamics and culture, is most certainly antithetical to the kind of fellow feeling, the mutual caring and assistance that will be nurtured under communism and such an observation and expectation hardly involves "primitive psychology".

3) You still conceive of greed as being something that is solely destructive.

The kind of adversarial and all-consuming self-interest and drive for accumulation capitalists are driven to by the inherent dynamics of the capitalist system and market in fact is quite excessively destructive.

4) A world where no one owns anything sounds like hell to me.

Well, then you're simply conceptualizing it the wrong way. A better way of conceptualizing it would of course be as a world or life-system in which there's universal access, based on the principle of to each according to her/his need, to the material resources and goods needed to enjoy a decent material quality of life, precisely because no one is allowed to impose her/his ownership on the means of producing material goods and thereby gain a disproportionate amount of power enabling her/him to claim a disproportionate amount of well-being at the expense of others. In short, authentic communism would be a system in which people can and do still claim what they need to live well, and will be better able to do so because no one will be permitted to proprietarily claim the factors of production. This hardly sounds like a hellish state of affairs to me.

5) I think that even in the Utopia that you desire most people would still prioritize possessions and commodities--somehow that is bad, though I don't see why.

Selfishness centered around material possessions won't be quite the moral and social problem that it is in our current form of society because universal guaranteed access to economic well-being will essentially obviate the practical need for such selfishness. As for your inability to see why materialistic possessiveness is such a bad thing, well, this would indicate that your values orientation is profoundly awry, which is related to but is a much more fundamental and distressing problem than your opposition to communism.

6) You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is inherited rather than made, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem.

That members of the economic elite pass their wealth down to their offspring hardly makes American capitalism less of an elitist form of society.

7) If in your vision of paradise one is no longer able to be indifferent to others, then I reject it.

I see, so you think that people should have a right to be and behave like benighted individualists, i.e. in a fashion that takes no account of the fundamental interdependence of existence. This is a rather perverse concept of rights and a travesty of classical liberalism.

Now, there is nothing really wrong with your first paragraph, the real problems begin with the second paragraph.

Well, at least you've found some merit in something that I've written.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
Harold_Lloyd
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11/18/2014 1:01:24 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I don't see drug use as a result of capitalism, but as a result of stress.

These days, a lot of stress stems from the rapidly increasing pace of change.

Constant change makes some people a little crazy.
Mostly, those people yearn for the old days, a simpler and more understandable era.
Many are political conservatives.

I read somewhere a few years ago that housewives in Utah were the nations biggest users of antidepressants.
charleslb
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11/18/2014 5:58:53 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/18/2014 1:01:24 PM, Harold_Lloyd wrote:
I don't see drug use as a result of capitalism, but as a result of stress.

A multitude of stressors in fact stem from and are exacerbated by our capitalist system and the harsh socioeconomic facts of life under it.


These days, a lot of stress stems from the rapidly increasing pace of change.

Constant change makes some people a little crazy.

And yes, excessive and excessively/destructively/stressfully frequent change, Schopferische Zerstorung, is an inherent feature of capitalism.

Mostly, those people yearn for the old days, a simpler and more understandable era.
Many are political conservatives.

Yes, and I would also point out that this is a polite description of a reactionary.

I read somewhere a few years ago that housewives in Utah were the nations biggest users of antidepressants.

Even hausfraus in the suburbs of Salt Lake are products of our society.
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
charleslb
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11/18/2014 6:05:13 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/18/2014 1:15:48 AM, charleslb wrote:
At 11/17/2014 7:38:39 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/16/2014 5:07:19 PM, charleslb wrote:
Let me simplify. Some of us are in favor of a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life. And those of us, such as yours truly, who are in favor of taking such a truly civilized way of being together in the world to its rigorously logical conclusion are called communists. This is our eminently leftward location on the political-philosophical spectrum. On the opposite side of the spectrum are individuals with a macho and an egoistic streak in their mentality that considers the idea of a kinder and gentler society namby-pamby, and that's staunchly in favor of a nation of self-interestedly individualistic "entrepreneurs", undemocratically dominated by the strongest, most aggressive capitalist fat cats. Of course they rationalize and justify such an appalling worldview in terms of freedom and personal autonomy, but what it actually amounts to is social Darwinism in new wineskins. These individuals are euphemistically called "libertarians", conservatives, and neoliberals.

Well, to riff off of the song, one can imagine no possessions, no need for greed or hunger, a genuine brotherhood of man. One can imagine all the people sharing all the world. Or one can resign oneself to, and ideologize and idealize capitalism, i.e. a form of life in which possessions and commodities take priority over human beings and human values. In which greed is deemed to be good. In which hunger is appallingly widespread. In which the vision of the brotherhood of man is laughed out of court and everyone exists as atomized and alienated individuals. In which the one percent lock up and control most of the world's wealth, and the rest of the people share in the experience of economic hardship and privation. Again, if you're the former you're a fellow communist, if you're the latter you're a Republican, Tea Partier, or a "libertarian". You may say that those of us who are the former are dreamers, but we're not isolated nuts. I sincerely hope someday you will join us, and the world will live as one.

Problems with your post:

1) According to your definition of what a communist is everyone from the centre-right to the left is a communist.

Centre-right folks don't envision or advocate the fundamental overthrow and negation of the entire capitalist life-system.

2) It is psychologically absurd to speak of a supposed opposition between selfishness and selflessness--that is primitive psychology.

By your lights perhaps. Yes, of course altruism never will, doesn't need to, and shouldn't entirely offset or snuff out egoism, the aim of life is after all self-actualization, and therefore one shouldn't think in excessively Manichaean terms of selflessness vs. selfishness. In fact, the moderation of egoism and the promotion of pro-social attitudes and values that will characterize communist society will promote human beings working in an interdependent fashion to optimize their individual self-actualization. So yes, social altruism and individualism aren't entirely or fundamentally at cross purposes. However, the kind of competitive and adversarial egoism fostered by capitalism, by its economic dynamics and culture, is most certainly antithetical to the kind of fellow feeling, the mutual caring and assistance that will be nurtured under communism and such an observation and expectation hardly involves "primitive psychology".

3) You still conceive of greed as being something that is solely destructive.

The kind of adversarial and all-consuming self-interest and drive for accumulation capitalists are driven to by the inherent dynamics of the capitalist system and market in fact is quite excessively destructive.

4) A world where no one owns anything sounds like hell to me.

Well, then you're simply conceptualizing it the wrong way. A better way of conceptualizing it would of course be as a world or life-system in which there's universal access, based on the principle of to each according to her/his need, to the material resources and goods needed to enjoy a decent material quality of life, precisely because no one is allowed to impose her/his ownership on the means of producing material goods and thereby gain a disproportionate amount of power enabling her/him to claim a disproportionate amount of well-being at the expense of others. In short, authentic communism would be a system in which people can and do still claim what they need to live well, and will be better able to do so because no one will be permitted to proprietarily claim the factors of production. This hardly sounds like a hellish state of affairs to me.

5) I think that even in the Utopia that you desire most people would still prioritize possessions and commodities--somehow that is bad, though I don't see why.

Selfishness centered around material possessions won't be quite the moral and social problem that it is in our current form of society because universal guaranteed access to economic well-being will essentially obviate the practical need for such selfishness. As for your inability to see why materialistic possessiveness is such a bad thing, well, this would indicate that your values orientation is profoundly awry, which is related to but is a much more fundamental and distressing problem than your opposition to communism.

6) You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is inherited rather than made, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem.

That members of the economic elite pass their wealth down to their offspring hardly makes American capitalism less of an elitist form of society.

7) If in your vision of paradise one is no longer able to be indifferent to others, then I reject it.

I see, so you think that people should have a right to be and behave like benighted individualists, i.e. in a fashion that takes no account of the fundamental interdependence of existence. This is a rather perverse concept of rights and a travesty of classical liberalism.

Now, there is nothing really wrong with your first paragraph, the real problems begin with the second paragraph.

Well, at least you've found some merit in something that I've written.

You might perhaps also be interested in this, http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
Harold_Lloyd
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11/18/2014 6:05:34 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
I'm not disputing that capitalism may contribute to the general level of stress in the population, but it's hardly the primary cause.

Even die-hard capitalists are under stress. They get stressed when the rules they operate under keep changing without reason or notice.
HououinKyouma
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11/18/2014 7:40:06 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/18/2014 6:05:13 PM, charleslb wrote:
Problems with your post:

1) According to your definition of what a communist is everyone from the centre-right to the left is a communist.

Centre-right folks don't envision or advocate the fundamental overthrow and negation of the entire capitalist life-system.

You defined communism as the attempt to bring about "a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life," such a definition would include those on the center-right.

2) It is psychologically absurd to speak of a supposed opposition between selfishness and selflessness--that is primitive psychology.

By your lights perhaps. Yes, of course altruism never will, doesn't need to, and shouldn't entirely offset or snuff out egoism, the aim of life is after all self-actualization, and therefore one shouldn't think in excessively Manichaean terms of selflessness vs. selfishness. In fact, the moderation of egoism and the promotion of pro-social attitudes and values that will characterize communist society will promote human beings working in an interdependent fashion to optimize their individual self-actualization. So yes, social altruism and individualism aren't entirely or fundamentally at cross purposes. However, the kind of competitive and adversarial egoism fostered by capitalism, by its economic dynamics and culture, is most certainly antithetical to the kind of fellow feeling, the mutual caring and assistance that will be nurtured under communism and such an observation and expectation hardly involves "primitive psychology".

Competiveness and "adversarial egoism" are necessary components of human activity without which one cannot have culture and knowledge and science--let alone self-actualization. They are not, by necessity, destructive or subversive of the attempt to create a society that is founded on the principles of social cohesion--already established--and of interdependence--which again is already a part of life.

3) You still conceive of greed as being something that is solely destructive.

The kind of adversarial and all-consuming self-interest and drive for accumulation capitalists are driven to by the inherent dynamics of the capitalist system and market in fact is quite excessively destructive.

Without greed one would lack one of the primary motivations behind technological as well as cultural progress and advance.

4) A world where no one owns anything sounds like hell to me.

Well, then you're simply conceptualizing it the wrong way. A better way of conceptualizing it would of course be as a world or life-system in which there's universal access, based on the principle of to each according to her/his need, to the material resources and goods needed to enjoy a decent material quality of life, precisely because no one is allowed to impose her/his ownership on the means of producing material goods and thereby gain a disproportionate amount of power enabling her/him to claim a disproportionate amount of well-being at the expense of others. In short, authentic communism would be a system in which people can and do still claim what they need to live well, and will be better able to do so because no one will be permitted to proprietarily claim the factors of production. This hardly sounds like a hellish state of affairs to me.

There is already, in social democracies, access to material goods and services required to have a decent life, they might not be distributed according to Marxist principles, but then I don't think that to distribute resources in such a way would actually work in terms of economics. The system you have described above might not be hellish, but it is too idealistic.


5) I think that even in the Utopia that you desire most people would still prioritize possessions and commodities--somehow that is bad, though I don't see why.

Selfishness centered around material possessions won't be quite the moral and social problem that it is in our current form of society because universal guaranteed access to economic well-being will essentially obviate the practical need for such selfishness. As for your inability to see why materialistic possessiveness is such a bad thing, well, this would indicate that your values orientation is profoundly awry, which is related to but is a much more fundamental and distressing problem than your opposition to communism.

Actually, even in a communist society the vast majority of people would give a great priority to their material well-being, perhaps even more so than to their spiritual well being, it is just that most people only care about that more than about anything else. After all, the whole point of communism is to improve the material living standards of others, not their spiritual or mental health--which is, quite rightly, a secondary affair.

My opposition to communism is not based on any of this, though, you have got that wrong.


6) You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is inherited rather than made, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem.

That members of the economic elite pass their wealth down to their offspring hardly makes American capitalism less of an elitist form of society.

I am sorry, I meant to say "You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is made rather than inherited, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem," I mixed up the word order while I was typing.

7) If in your vision of paradise one is no longer able to be indifferent to others, then I reject it.

I see, so you think that people should have a right to be and behave like benighted individualists, i.e. in a fashion that takes no account of the fundamental interdependence of existence. This is a rather perverse concept of rights and a travesty of classical liberalism.

I am sorry, but I think that the ability to live on one's own, without having to care about what anyone else is doing or what anyone else is thinking is a precious liberty, and should be the aim of any movement for social improvement: to emancipate men from having to care about others,

Now, there is nothing really wrong with your first paragraph, the real problems begin with the second paragraph.

Well, at least you've found some merit in something that I've written.

You might perhaps also be interested in this, http://www.debate.org...
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.
charleslb
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11/18/2014 8:17:15 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/18/2014 7:40:06 PM, HououinKyouma wrote:
At 11/18/2014 6:05:13 PM, charleslb wrote:
Problems with your post:

1) According to your definition of what a communist is everyone from the centre-right to the left is a communist.

Centre-right folks don't envision or advocate the fundamental overthrow and negation of the entire capitalist life-system.

You defined communism as the attempt to bring about "a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life," such a definition would include those on the center-right.

Center-right folks aren't in favor of the kind of radical change necessary to significantly ameliorate the lot of capitalism's victims.

2) It is psychologically absurd to speak of a supposed opposition between selfishness and selflessness--that is primitive psychology.

By your lights perhaps. Yes, of course altruism never will, doesn't need to, and shouldn't entirely offset or snuff out egoism, the aim of life is after all self-actualization, and therefore one shouldn't think in excessively Manichaean terms of selflessness vs. selfishness. In fact, the moderation of egoism and the promotion of pro-social attitudes and values that will characterize communist society will promote human beings working in an interdependent fashion to optimize their individual self-actualization. So yes, social altruism and individualism aren't entirely or fundamentally at cross purposes. However, the kind of competitive and adversarial egoism fostered by capitalism, by its economic dynamics and culture, is most certainly antithetical to the kind of fellow feeling, the mutual caring and assistance that will be nurtured under communism and such an observation and expectation hardly involves "primitive psychology".

Competiveness and "adversarial egoism" are necessary components of human activity ...

This is an ideological, not an empirically or historically supportable statement.

3) You still conceive of greed as being something that is solely destructive.

The kind of adversarial and all-consuming self-interest and drive for accumulation capitalists are driven to by the inherent dynamics of the capitalist system and market in fact is quite excessively destructive.

Without greed one would lack one of the primary motivations behind technological as well as cultural progress and advance.

Creativity is fundamental and sufficient driving force for progress, and would still exist even if greed and the selfish form of ambition that you ideologically idealize were totally eliminated.

4) A world where no one owns anything sounds like hell to me.

Well, then you're simply conceptualizing it the wrong way. A better way of conceptualizing it would of course be as a world or life-system in which there's universal access, based on the principle of to each according to her/his need, to the material resources and goods needed to enjoy a decent material quality of life, precisely because no one is allowed to impose her/his ownership on the means of producing material goods and thereby gain a disproportionate amount of power enabling her/him to claim a disproportionate amount of well-being at the expense of others. In short, authentic communism would be a system in which people can and do still claim what they need to live well, and will be better able to do so because no one will be permitted to proprietarily claim the factors of production. This hardly sounds like a hellish state of affairs to me.

There is already, in social democracies, ...

Yes, social democracies are certainly preferable to American-style capitalism, but there's quite simply underlyingly, persistently, considerably too much capitalism surviving in the mix of mixed economies. Too much capitalism corrupting and subverting them in quite fundamental, dangerous, and destructive ways. Too much influence of the logic, dynamics, power structure, and dominant elites of capitalism undermining the socialist side of so-called and naively vaunted mixed economies. Yes, the potentially extinction-level problem that is capitalism, its inbuilt suicidal contradictions are still too systemically present and prominent for a European-type synthesis of capitalism and socialism to be the ultimate solution, for it to displace communism as the best course to set humanity's economic evolution on.


5) I think that even in the Utopia that you desire most people would still prioritize possessions and commodities--somehow that is bad, though I don't see why.

Selfishness centered around material possessions won't be quite the moral and social problem that it is in our current form of society because universal guaranteed access to economic well-being will essentially obviate the practical need for such selfishness. As for your inability to see why materialistic possessiveness is such a bad thing, well, this would indicate that your values orientation is profoundly awry, which is related to but is a much more fundamental and distressing problem than your opposition to communism.

Actually, even in a communist society the vast majority of people would give a great priority to their material well-being, perhaps even more so than to their spiritual well being, it is just that most people only care about that more than about anything else. After all, the whole point of communism is to improve the material living standards of others, not their spiritual or mental health--which is, quite rightly, a secondary affair.

Correction, the fundamental point of communism is the liberation of human beings from conditions such as economic inequality, exploitation, poverty, economic & political oppression, objectification, and alienation to free them up to cultivate their full human potential and to enjoy a well-rounded kind of human flourishing, not one that materialistically prioritizes mere physical well-being and philistine pleasures. And yes, it's quite arguable that under communism human beings will be considerably less materialistic and banausic because they will no longer have poverty and a commercialized culture driving them to be preoccupied with material things.

My opposition to communism is not based on any of this, though, you have got that wrong.

Thus far your opposition seems to be based on stereotypes and fundamental misconceptions.

I am sorry, I meant to say "You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is made rather than inherited, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem," I mixed up the word order while I was typing.

Firstly, being successful at being an aggressively overaccumulating capitalist doesn't justify owning an obscenely disproportionate amount of wealth. Secondly, American capitalism certainly isn't as Horatio-Algerian as its apologists would have us believe.

7) If in your vision of paradise one is no longer able to be indifferent to others, then I reject it.

I am sorry, but I think that the ability to live on one's own, without having to care about what anyone else is doing or what anyone else is thinking is a precious liberty, and should be the aim of any movement for social improvement: to emancipate men from having to care about others,

Enjoying license to be a selfish individualist =/= genuine freedom, except perhaps to a "libertarian" mentality which you've repeatedly denied suffering from.

Now, there is nothing really wrong with your first paragraph, the real problems begin with the second paragraph.

Well, at least you've found some merit in something that I've written.

You might perhaps also be interested in this, http://www.debate.org...
Yo, all of my subliterate conservative criticasters who find perusing and processing the sesquipedalian verbiage of my posts to be such a bothersome brain-taxing chore, I have a new nickname for you. Henceforth you shall be known as Pooh Bears. No, not for the obvious apt reasons, i.e., not because you're full of pooh, and not because of your ursine irritability. Rather, you put me in mind of an A.A. Milne quote, "I am a Bear of Very Little Brain, and long words bother me". Love ya, Pooh Bears.
Vox_Veritas
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11/18/2014 8:32:41 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
Indeed; Alcoholism was nonexistent in the Soviet Union heres the prof:
http://www.soviet-empire.com...
Call me Vox, the Resident Contrarian of debate.org.

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https://debatedotorg.wordpress.com...

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HououinKyouma
Posts: 1,030
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11/18/2014 11:09:42 PM
Posted: 2 years ago
At 11/18/2014 8:17:15 PM, charleslb wrote:
You defined communism as the attempt to bring about "a structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life," such a definition would include those on the center-right.

Center-right folks aren't in favor of the kind of radical change necessary to significantly ameliorate the lot of capitalism's victims.

Oh, you might disagree with the folks on the German CDU party, for instance, about what would constitute a "structurally kinder and gentler, a more interdependent and democratic, and a less selfish socioeconomic way of life," but there is no doubt that you are pursuing the same goals, just that with different aims.

Competiveness and "adversarial egoism" are necessary components of human activity ...

This is an ideological, not an empirically or historically supportable statement.

By no means. Without competitiveness there would be no great art, every artist competes against his contemporaries and artists of the past; every scientist seeks to promote his own theories above those of others--thus fueling the engines of scientific discovery, everyone wants their own theories to be corroborated and those of others falsified. I find that the history of ideas and of art supports my view.

Without greed one would lack one of the primary motivations behind technological as well as cultural progress and advance.

Creativity is fundamental and sufficient driving force for progress, and would still exist even if greed and the selfish form of ambition that you ideologically idealize were totally eliminated.

"Creativity" is a product of greed, ambition, intelligence, wisdom, etc, etc. To eliminate egoism would be to castrate the intellect.

There is already, in social democracies, ...

Yes, social democracies are certainly preferable to American-style capitalism, but there's quite simply underlyingly, persistently, considerably too much capitalism surviving in the mix of mixed economies. Too much capitalism corrupting and subverting them in quite fundamental, dangerous, and destructive ways. Too much influence of the logic, dynamics, power structure, and dominant elites of capitalism undermining the socialist side of so-called and naively vaunted mixed economies. Yes, the potentially extinction-level problem that is capitalism, its inbuilt suicidal contradictions are still too systemically present and prominent for a European-type synthesis of capitalism and socialism to be the ultimate solution, for it to displace communism as the best course to set humanity's economic evolution on.

A) There is very little corrupting, much less subversive, influences from capitalism in the social democracies of Europe.
B) I fail to see how France, a country ruled by its trade unions, is dominated by its capitalist elites--the same applies to Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Germany, etc, etc.
C) So far the "suicidal contradictions" of capitalism have failed to destroy it, the comrades have been predicting its end for over a hundred years. Among the other things that the Old Boy got wrong was his idea that capitalism is incorrigible, whereas in fact it has been able to deal with its contradictions.
D) The social democratic experiment, or the mixed economy experiment, has already been validated by history as an approach that works--unlike communism.

Actually, even in a communist society the vast majority of people would give a great priority to their material well-being, perhaps even more so than to their spiritual well being, it is just that most people only care about that more than about anything else. After all, the whole point of communism is to improve the material living standards of others, not their spiritual or mental health--which is, quite rightly, a secondary affair.

Correction, the fundamental point of communism is the liberation of human beings from conditions such as economic inequality, exploitation, poverty, economic & political oppression, objectification, and alienation to free them up to cultivate their full human potential and to enjoy a well-rounded kind of human flourishing, not one that materialistically prioritizes mere physical well-being and philistine pleasures. And yes, it's quite arguable that under communism human beings will be considerably less materialistic and banausic because they will no longer have poverty and a commercialized culture driving them to be preoccupied with material things.

The primary goal of communism is improvement in living standards--which would bring, one supposes, an improvement in the spiritual well-being of people. I find that second part of communism--the drive for universal self-actualization--to be too idealistic, as I have already said before, it is usually among the working classes that one finds more spirituality--religiously derived as it might be--than among the bourgeoisie and the middle-classes--university professors and literati exempted, of course. At the end of the day philistinism is a human trait that is perhaps ineradicable, there will always be people who care nothing for art or science or philosophy. There is no historical evidence to support the claim that higher spirituality follows from better material conditions.

My opposition to communism is not based on any of this, though, you have got that wrong.

Thus far your opposition seems to be based on stereotypes and fundamental misconceptions.

What stereotypes and misconceptions are you talking about?

I am sorry, I meant to say "You fail to acknowledge that the US is the one country where most of the wealth is made rather than inherited, so it is not as elitistic as you make it seem," I mixed up the word order while I was typing.

Firstly, being successful at being an aggressively overaccumulating capitalist doesn't justify owning an obscenely disproportionate amount of wealth. Secondly, American capitalism certainly isn't as Horatio-Algerian as its apologists would have us believe.

There is nothing actually obscene about people having more wealth than others, it is at least theoretically possible that there should be great wealth without poverty. The second part is just an assertion.

Enjoying license to be a selfish individualist =/= genuine freedom, except perhaps to a "libertarian" mentality which you've repeatedly denied suffering from.

If by "libertarian" you want to put me in the Ayn Rand/Ron Paul camp then of course I will disown the label, if you wish to place me in the same camp as Oscar Wilde, then I have no problem with it.
"Here the ways of men part: if you wish to strive for peace of soul and pleasure, then believe; if you wish to be a devotee of truth, then inquire." F. Nietzsche.

"Freedom is always freedom for the one who thinks differently." R. Luxemburg.

"The principle of the masochistic left is that, in general, two blacks make a white, half a loaf is the same as no bread." G. Orwell, paraphrase.

"Islamophobia is a word created by fascists, used by cowards, to manipulate morons". Andrew Cummins.