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The Legacy of Socialism in Venezuela

autocorrect
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3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.
autocorrect
Posts: 432
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3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!
Greyparrot
Posts: 14,300
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3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?
autocorrect
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3/31/2016 4:00:02 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

If that's what you think. Chavez's socialism was very much a cult of personality. But is that a causal factor? I don't know. Maybe it's that socialism - after the fall of communism, is no longer a viable economic credo. Again, I don't know. Maybe outside interests are conspiring to prove socialism a dangerous evil. Maybe this is the children fighting over their late fathers legacy. I'm struggling to understand why these people are suffering a tragic social, political and economic situation. Also I'm wondering if anything can, or should be done to prevent it getting worse. I'm not trying to make you feel guilty, but to stimulate discussion.... by making you feel guilty! Sorry about that, but conceivably, it could make the migrant situation much worse ....and many here never tire of talking Trump!
BrendanD19
Posts: 2,050
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3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

I have a different take on it because wealth inequality was dramatically reduced under Chavez, so your premise is, therefore, flawed. What Chavez's hybrid state/democratic socialism didn't concentrate the wealth in the hands of the government, it resulted in greater investment from the public sector. The problem that Venezuela is having stems in large part from a failure to develop its other resources and its over-reliance on oil, which is destroying their economy because of the low oil prices. The Inflation is bad in large part because of Maduro, who has done the wrong thing with inflation and placed very low price ceilings on consumer goods hoping that would stimulate the economy, which was a plainly dumb move. The food and medicine shortages are due in large part to US sanctions on Venezuela. The increasing murder rate is not too surprising, as that is a trend we are seeing across latin America and has a lot to do with the drug trade. It is
The problems can be summarized thusly: Venezuela is overly reliant on oil, and Oil is in decline, the result is that oil-driven economy declines with it. When you add on US Sanctions against Venezuela, you see the bleak picture get even bleaker. And Maduro is not exactly the smartest of the PSUV leaders, and he is failing to live up to Chavez's legacy.
autocorrect
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3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

I have a different take on it because wealth inequality was dramatically reduced under Chavez, so your premise is, therefore, flawed. What Chavez's hybrid state/democratic socialism didn't concentrate the wealth in the hands of the government, it resulted in greater investment from the public sector. The problem that Venezuela is having stems in large part from a failure to develop its other resources and its over-reliance on oil, which is destroying their economy because of the low oil prices. The Inflation is bad in large part because of Maduro, who has done the wrong thing with inflation and placed very low price ceilings on consumer goods hoping that would stimulate the economy, which was a plainly dumb move. The food and medicine shortages are due in large part to US sanctions on Venezuela. The increasing murder rate is not too surprising, as that is a trend we are seeing across latin America and has a lot to do with the drug trade. It is
The problems can be summarized thusly: Venezuela is overly reliant on oil, and Oil is in decline, the result is that oil-driven economy declines with it. When you add on US Sanctions against Venezuela, you see the bleak picture get even bleaker. And Maduro is not exactly the smartest of the PSUV leaders, and he is failing to live up to Chavez's legacy.

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.
BrendanD19
Posts: 2,050
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3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.
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Posts: 432
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4/1/2016 12:49:48 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

I understand what you're saying but land is one of the three primary bases of economic production, along with labor and capital. Agriculture is a foundation industry with strategic significance, both in terms of the trade deficit - and in that, if anything goes wrong in another sector, as it has with oil prices, the people at least won't starve. I would concede the point that it wasn't owned by the state - after it had been distributed; but it was owned by the state in order to distribute it, and was given on condition that it could not be sold.

There were reasons for this, not least over-urbanization and the desire to see domestic production of food increase - but it was quite possibly the worst possible way to go about it in my opinion - precisely because it makes the land worth, not more than the food that can be produced from it. Recognizing land as one of the three primary bases of economic production confers value upon it, such that can be bought, sold or leveraged to raise money for investment in better methods of production. Thus, more food is produced - and even if the consequence is income inequality, still, everyone involved is better off.

Had the government allowed the sale of land after 5 years for instance; many - not all, but many would likely seek to mortgage and re-invest in the home and way of life they had built. However, if everyone involved sought to sell - an unimproved site, they would get very little for the land anyhow. Instead, what has been created is a state of wealthlessness - in which the owner occupies land that isn't an asset - under conditions that do not reward the investment of effort, or encourage the re-investment of profits from the sale of produce.
bballcrook21
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4/1/2016 3:29:22 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

It's almost as if Socialism doesn't work....
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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4/1/2016 3:32:28 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

I have a different take on it because wealth inequality was dramatically reduced under Chavez, so your premise is, therefore, flawed. What Chavez's hybrid state/democratic socialism didn't concentrate the wealth in the hands of the government, it resulted in greater investment from the public sector. The problem that Venezuela is having stems in large part from a failure to develop its other resources and its over-reliance on oil, which is destroying their economy because of the low oil prices. The Inflation is bad in large part because of Maduro, who has done the wrong thing with inflation and placed very low price ceilings on consumer goods hoping that would stimulate the economy, which was a plainly dumb move. The food and medicine shortages are due in large part to US sanctions on Venezuela. The increasing murder rate is not too surprising, as that is a trend we are seeing across latin America and has a lot to do with the drug trade. It is
The problems can be summarized thusly: Venezuela is overly reliant on oil, and Oil is in decline, the result is that oil-driven economy declines with it. When you add on US Sanctions against Venezuela, you see the bleak picture get even bleaker. And Maduro is not exactly the smartest of the PSUV leaders, and he is failing to live up to Chavez's legacy.

Wealth inequality being reduced is not a factor of a good or healthy economy, nor a free nation. You do not measure a country's greatness by how equally destitute it's people are. Chavez was an absolute fool, and don't act as if the U.S. sanctions against Venezuela were random; they were a response to systematic idiocy of the Venezuelan government.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
Sam7411
Posts: 959
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4/1/2016 3:40:05 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 3:29:22 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

It's almost as if Socialism doesn't work....
Mind=Blown
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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4/1/2016 3:53:30 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 3:40:05 AM, Sam7411 wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:29:22 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

It's almost as if Socialism doesn't work....
Mind=Blown

Only if you're not a Socialist. If you are, your wing is already not there...
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
triangle.128k
Posts: 3,649
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4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.
triangle.128k
Posts: 3,649
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4/1/2016 4:26:31 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 3:32:28 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

I have a different take on it because wealth inequality was dramatically reduced under Chavez, so your premise is, therefore, flawed. What Chavez's hybrid state/democratic socialism didn't concentrate the wealth in the hands of the government, it resulted in greater investment from the public sector. The problem that Venezuela is having stems in large part from a failure to develop its other resources and its over-reliance on oil, which is destroying their economy because of the low oil prices. The Inflation is bad in large part because of Maduro, who has done the wrong thing with inflation and placed very low price ceilings on consumer goods hoping that would stimulate the economy, which was a plainly dumb move. The food and medicine shortages are due in large part to US sanctions on Venezuela. The increasing murder rate is not too surprising, as that is a trend we are seeing across latin America and has a lot to do with the drug trade. It is
The problems can be summarized thusly: Venezuela is overly reliant on oil, and Oil is in decline, the result is that oil-driven economy declines with it. When you add on US Sanctions against Venezuela, you see the bleak picture get even bleaker. And Maduro is not exactly the smartest of the PSUV leaders, and he is failing to live up to Chavez's legacy.

Wealth inequality being reduced is not a factor of a good or healthy economy, nor a free nation. You do not measure a country's greatness by how equally destitute it's people are. Chavez was an absolute fool, and don't act as if the U.S. sanctions against Venezuela were random; they were a response to systematic idiocy of the Venezuelan government.

Except that a genuine free market would actually help the wealth distribution, while crony capitalism would create a larger divide between the rich and the poor. It's the same logic with giving a man a fish instead of teaching him now to fish. The difference is that you're giving the poor money and not teaching them how to compete in the job market for future wealth. Then of course, the government expands as a result, and economic liberty does the opposite.
Greyparrot
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4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.
autocorrect
Posts: 432
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4/1/2016 7:33:14 AM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.

True, true, but what to do? Genius is in short supply. Or is it charisma? I mean, the Venezeulans loved Chavez, trusted him in a way they're never going to trust Maduro - or any likely successor. Putting aside oil prices for a moment, Chavez's revolution worked because the people trusted Chavez to re-distribute the wealth the government appropriated. Much of that was oil wealth. At 95% of export earnings, and 25% of GDP - any disruption to the oil and gas sector was bound to be disasterous. I sort of ignored the point when BrendanD19 made it - because I wanted to focus on the land issue, but clearly, the assumption behind these land reforms was that they don't need land values to play a part in a diversified economy - because they have the largest oil reserves in the world - and a beloved leader the people could trust to share the wealth. I think the key phrase here is 'diversified economy' - and I don't mean drug smuggling and kidnapping!!
BrendanD19
Posts: 2,050
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4/1/2016 12:54:27 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.

Hints why I want decentralized social ownership through a cooperative system
BrendanD19
Posts: 2,050
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4/1/2016 3:30:30 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 7:33:14 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.

True, true, but what to do? Genius is in short supply. Or is it charisma? I mean, the Venezeulans loved Chavez, trusted him in a way they're never going to trust Maduro - or any likely successor. Putting aside oil prices for a moment, Chavez's revolution worked because the people trusted Chavez to re-distribute the wealth the government appropriated. Much of that was oil wealth. At 95% of export earnings, and 25% of GDP - any disruption to the oil and gas sector was bound to be disasterous. I sort of ignored the point when BrendanD19 made it - because I wanted to focus on the land issue, but clearly, the assumption behind these land reforms was that they don't need land values to play a part in a diversified economy - because they have the largest oil reserves in the world - and a beloved leader the people could trust to share the wealth. I think the key phrase here is 'diversified economy' - and I don't mean drug smuggling and kidnapping!!

That is a very good point. I like Maduro's ambition and he and I agree on a lot of things, however, he is kind of a moron.
Venezuela has failed in many ways to build the kind of socialism that Chavez talked about, his Socialism of the 21st Century. 21st Century is built on innovation and diversification, and you cannot build a 21st century economy on oil alone.
autocorrect
Posts: 432
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4/1/2016 4:14:54 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 3:30:30 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:33:14 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.

True, true, but what to do? Genius is in short supply. Or is it charisma? I mean, the Venezeulans loved Chavez, trusted him in a way they're never going to trust Maduro - or any likely successor. Putting aside oil prices for a moment, Chavez's revolution worked because the people trusted Chavez to re-distribute the wealth the government appropriated. Much of that was oil wealth. At 95% of export earnings, and 25% of GDP - any disruption to the oil and gas sector was bound to be disasterous. I sort of ignored the point when BrendanD19 made it - because I wanted to focus on the land issue, but clearly, the assumption behind these land reforms was that they don't need land values to play a part in a diversified economy - because they have the largest oil reserves in the world - and a beloved leader the people could trust to share the wealth. I think the key phrase here is 'diversified economy' - and I don't mean drug smuggling and kidnapping!!

That is a very good point. I like Maduro's ambition and he and I agree on a lot of things, however, he is kind of a moron.
Venezuela has failed in many ways to build the kind of socialism that Chavez talked about, his Socialism of the 21st Century. 21st Century is built on innovation and diversification, and you cannot build a 21st century economy on oil alone.

21st century socialism? I can't imagine such an experiment taking place other than in an oil rich country. Like the land issue - it demonstrates a disdain for the value of goods. I don't see any incentive toward innovation or diversification (or efficiency) arising from its theoretical bases:

1. Equivalence economy, which should be based on Marxian labour theory of value and which is democratically determined by those who directly create value, instead of market-economical principles;

2. Majority democracy, which makes use of plebiscites to decide upon important questions that concern the whole society;

3. Basic democracy, based on democratic state institutions as legitimate representatives of the common interests of the majority of citizens, with a suitable protection of minority rights; and

4. The critical and responsible subject, the rationally, ethically and aesthetically self-determined citizen."[1]

Start with the last. I've never met this person. I meet rationally self interested actors all the time - but I never met with a rationally, ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen. They don't exist. And this is the basic problem that makes the rest if it a farce:

Democratically determined, Marxian value theory pricing of goods. So, whatever I think my labour is worth - is what the goods I produce cost. But that's okay, because I'm not a rationally self interested actor. I'm an ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen.

Majority democracy that decides important questions that concern the whole of society... So, politics is not a means to reconcile conflicts of interests, that don't exist among ethically and aesthetically self determined citizens.

No wonder they failed to build it. It's insane. What part of this can you possibly agree with?
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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4/1/2016 4:32:44 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

What's funny is that North Korea, Communist China, USSR, etc. all had "elections". Democratic Socialism, actually, I find to be far worse as a term, because it's mob rule and you can literally vote away your own neighbor's rights.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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4/1/2016 5:21:14 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 4:14:54 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:30 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:33:14 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:

Thanks for you views. Much of what you say is apt and interesting, except for the point about income inequality declining under the Chavez government, which doesn't have the implication that wealth (and power) - were therefore not concentrated in the hands of government. It's not quite as simple as it appears - because nationalization in the Venezeulan oil industry long preceded Chavez; however:

'Ch"vez enacted the new Hydrocarbons Law, which came into effect in January 2002. This law replaced the Hydrocarbons Law of 1943 and the Nationalization Law of 1975. Among other things, the new law provided that all oil production and distribution activities were to be the domain of the Venezuelan state.'

Also, his land reforms were quite complicated aswell, such that's it's difficult to make a general statement, but:

'Venezuelan citizens between the age of 18 and 25 or who head a family may petition to benefit from the Plan's land redistribution programs. The Plan's participants are first granted a piece of land to homestead and cultivate; if they cultivate it continuously for three years, they are then given official title to the land. This government-recognized title may then be inherited by the participants' relations, but its sale is legally proscribed.'

If sale of the land is prohibited, it is effectively the property of the state - rather than private property being bought and sold in the real economy. Part of the intention of these land reforms, in a country with an 85% urbanization rate - was to break up the wealth and influence of latifundios - from the word, latifundium meaning a very extensive parcel of privately owned land. Which is to say that he demolished what agricultural industry Venezeula had to model it more along the lines of the third world; making appropriated land effectively worthless, and driving expertize out of the industry.

Thus, even if income inequality was reduced overall - it's because the real economy had any means to get rich taken out of it, while the state rolling in oil money - bestowed its favors...let us say, with a perfectly even hand. But even so... I think these facts do lend themselves to my first speculation that such a system is unstable when government is in transition.

The Land reform was meant as a way of giving impoverished families who had been tenant farmers their own farms. Want they wanted to avoid was the creation of new tenant farming cartels, for lack of a better word. Your claim that by making it illegal to sell the land, it is thus owned by the state, doesn't really make sense. It isn't owned by the state as the state has relinquished its claim to it and given it to the family. That is like saying that because it is illegal to sell eagle feathers in the US, the government, therefore, owns all the eagle feathers, when the feathers were actually something that was handed down to me from my grandfather. I know that is a tortured analogy, but it's the best I could come up with.
It was a complete restructuring of the Venezuelan agricultural sector, and if I had been in charge I would have organized the farmers into cooperatives, so they could be more competitive economically.

Yah that's the problem with centrally controlled economies. Either you have a genius running it, or it all falls apart.

True, true, but what to do? Genius is in short supply. Or is it charisma? I mean, the Venezeulans loved Chavez, trusted him in a way they're never going to trust Maduro - or any likely successor. Putting aside oil prices for a moment, Chavez's revolution worked because the people trusted Chavez to re-distribute the wealth the government appropriated. Much of that was oil wealth. At 95% of export earnings, and 25% of GDP - any disruption to the oil and gas sector was bound to be disasterous. I sort of ignored the point when BrendanD19 made it - because I wanted to focus on the land issue, but clearly, the assumption behind these land reforms was that they don't need land values to play a part in a diversified economy - because they have the largest oil reserves in the world - and a beloved leader the people could trust to share the wealth. I think the key phrase here is 'diversified economy' - and I don't mean drug smuggling and kidnapping!!

That is a very good point. I like Maduro's ambition and he and I agree on a lot of things, however, he is kind of a moron.
Venezuela has failed in many ways to build the kind of socialism that Chavez talked about, his Socialism of the 21st Century. 21st Century is built on innovation and diversification, and you cannot build a 21st century economy on oil alone.

21st century socialism? I can't imagine such an experiment taking place other than in an oil rich country. Like the land issue - it demonstrates a disdain for the value of goods. I don't see any incentive toward innovation or diversification (or efficiency) arising from its theoretical bases:

1. Equivalence economy, which should be based on Marxian labour theory of value and which is democratically determined by those who directly create value, instead of market-economical principles;

2. Majority democracy, which makes use of plebiscites to decide upon important questions that concern the whole society;

3. Basic democracy, based on democratic state institutions as legitimate representatives of the common interests of the majority of citizens, with a suitable protection of minority rights; and

4. The critical and responsible subject, the rationally, ethically and aesthetically self-determined citizen."[1]

Start with the last. I've never met this person. I meet rationally self interested actors all the time - but I never met with a rationally, ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen. They don't exist. And this is the basic problem that makes the rest if it a farce:

Democratically determined, Marxian value theory pricing of goods. So, whatever I think my labour is worth - is what the goods I produce cost. But that's okay, because I'm not a rationally self interested actor. I'm an ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen.

Majority democracy that decides important questions that concern the whole of society... So, politics is not a means to reconcile conflicts of interests, that don't exist among ethically and aesthetically self determined citizens.

No wonder they failed to build it. It's insane. What part of this can you possibly agree with?

He agrees with all of it.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
EndarkenedRationalist
Posts: 14,201
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4/1/2016 5:56:45 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Worked pretty well in Europe
BrendanD19
Posts: 2,050
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4/1/2016 6:16:37 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 4:14:54 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:30 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:33:14 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 4/1/2016 5:30:33 AM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 11:31:21 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 9:38:53 PM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/31/2016 4:56:34 PM, BrendanD19 wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:


21st century socialism? I can't imagine such an experiment taking place other than in an oil rich country. Like the land issue - it demonstrates a disdain for the value of goods. I don't see any incentive toward innovation or diversification (or efficiency) arising from its theoretical bases:

1. Equivalence economy, which should be based on Marxian labour theory of value and which is democratically determined by those who directly create value, instead of market-economical principles;

2. Majority democracy, which makes use of plebiscites to decide upon important questions that concern the whole society;

3. Basic democracy, based on democratic state institutions as legitimate representatives of the common interests of the majority of citizens, with a suitable protection of minority rights; and

4. The critical and responsible subject, the rationally, ethically and aesthetically self-determined citizen."[1]

Start with the last. I've never met this person. I meet rationally self interested actors all the time - but I never met with a rationally, ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen. They don't exist. And this is the basic problem that makes the rest if it a farce:

Democratically determined, Marxian value theory pricing of goods. So, whatever I think my labour is worth - is what the goods I produce cost. But that's okay, because I'm not a rationally self interested actor. I'm an ethically and aesthetically self determined citizen.

Majority democracy that decides important questions that concern the whole of society... So, politics is not a means to reconcile conflicts of interests, that don't exist among ethically and aesthetically self determined citizens.

No wonder they failed to build it. It's insane. What part of this can you possibly agree with?

Seeing as you posted staight from wikipedia, I thought I would do the same

After a series of structural adjustment loans and debt restructuring led by the International Monetary Fund in the late twentieth century, Latin America experienced a significant increase in inequality. Between 1990 and 1999, the Gini coefficient rose in almost every Latin American country.[3] Volatile prices and inflation led to dissatisfaction. In 2000 only 37% of Latin Americans were satisfied with their democracies (20 points less than Europeans and 10 points less than sub-Saharan Africans).[4] In this context, a wave of left-leaning socio-political movements on behalf of indigenous rights, cocaleros, labor rights, women's rights, land rights, and educational reform emerged to eventually provide momentum for the election of socialist leaders.[2]
Socialism of the 21st century draws on indigenous traditions of communal governance and previous Latin America socialist and communist movements, including those of Salvador Allende, Fidel Castro, Che Guevara, the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, and the Sandinista National Liberation Front
1harderthanyouthink
Posts: 13,102
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4/1/2016 7:17:05 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Do you have a brain that can process politics?
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

DDO Risk King
triangle.128k
Posts: 3,649
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4/1/2016 7:23:31 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 7:17:05 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Do you have a brain that can process politics?

Do you have a brain that can process history?
1harderthanyouthink
Posts: 13,102
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4/1/2016 7:33:51 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 7:23:31 PM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:17:05 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Do you have a brain that can process politics?

Do you have a brain that can process history?

Quite. But one party states are not considered "democratic socialists".
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

DDO Risk King
triangle.128k
Posts: 3,649
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4/1/2016 7:38:46 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 7:33:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:23:31 PM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:17:05 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Do you have a brain that can process politics?

Do you have a brain that can process history?

Quite. But one party states are not considered "democratic socialists".

So having socialism in a democratic-republic is somehow going to work while having socialism in a pseudo-democratic dictatorship won't?
Socialism has nothing to do with democracy, so coining some word with a positive connotation and mixing it with a negative connotation isn't going to fool anybody. (Except for the far left)

And back to ad hominems since that's how you love to communicate:

"Do you have a brain that can process English?"
1harderthanyouthink
Posts: 13,102
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4/1/2016 7:45:04 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
At 4/1/2016 7:38:46 PM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:33:51 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:23:31 PM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 7:17:05 PM, 1harderthanyouthink wrote:
At 4/1/2016 4:24:35 AM, triangle.128k wrote:
At 4/1/2016 3:30:16 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 3/31/2016 3:42:03 PM, Greyparrot wrote:
At 3/31/2016 8:16:08 AM, autocorrect wrote:
At 3/30/2016 8:27:36 PM, autocorrect wrote:
After the death of Hugo Chavez - Venezuela's socialist revolution has stalled and the country is quickly descending into chaos. Crime is rife, there were 28,000 murders in 2013, Caracas is murder capital of the world, and more than 200 police were killed for their weapons last year. The hospitals are in disarray - with doctors earning less than $10 per month and patients buying medicines on the black market. Meanwhile, people are queuing days to shop for food, amidst hyper inflation, shortages of basic goods and growing social tension.

I'm struggling to understand how one person's death can be so significant. Is this because while socialism tends to concentrate money and power in the hands of government, and the figurehead, like Chavez - capitalism distributes wealth and influence among various competing interests, such that the system, in the event of a transition like that which occurred with the great leader's demise, remains stable?
Or do you have a different take on it?

Also, suggestions as to what might be done to avert the growing crisis are welcome.

No-one? No? Okay then, just build a wall from sea to shining sea instead - and pretend that everything beyond is somewhere else, or doesn't exist. That should solve it!

What do you want us to say? That socialism isn't feasible without a dictator?

Nah man it's "DEMOCRATIC Socialism". You vote for your dictator :)

I love how the far-left was so gullible to think putting "Democratic" in front of the term 'Socialism' actually makes a difference.

Do you have a brain that can process politics?

Do you have a brain that can process history?

Quite. But one party states are not considered "democratic socialists".

So having socialism in a democratic-republic is somehow going to work while having socialism in a pseudo-democratic dictatorship won't?
Socialism has nothing to do with democracy, so coining some word with a positive connotation and mixing it with a negative connotation isn't going to fool anybody. (Except for the far left)

Democratic socialists are quite different from authoritarian socialists...economic policy is not the only thing that goes through the government. One could also say a government legitimately run by the citizens of a country will do more to benefit the working class than a dictatorship.
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

DDO Risk King
1harderthanyouthink
Posts: 13,102
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4/1/2016 7:47:57 PM
Posted: 8 months ago
In reality, democratic socialists don't all support some Stalinist-esque central command form of economics.
"It's awfully considerate of you to think of me here,
And I'm much obliged to you for making it clear - that I'm not here."

-Syd Barrett

DDO Risk King