Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

27 July 2009

Dog-Eat-Dog Socialism

Over and over again, we have heard socialists describe capitalism and the free market as dog-eat-dog capitalism. This is a case of socialists anticipating how others should describe socialism and heading them off at the pass by using the phrase first to defame capitalism.

The socialist claims the Capitalist system of free markets is all about dogs eating one another, because, horror of horrors, it rewards hard work, competence, and the willingness to provide others with something that they actually want as an individual choice. Not everyone is as accomplished at doing this. This, the socialist thinks, is intolerable and they would like everyone else to buy into this idea also.

But think about it. If you want to write the deep and tragic novel that no one else wants to read, well would you want to be forced to read the novels that others thought were deep, but that you found boring? Or, if you can get the services of one doctor who has developed an efficient and safe surgical procedure that can be done in an out-patient hospital for thousands of dollars less than the old procedure done in a fully equipped hospital which will force you to stay in the hospital of 5 days, which service are you going to choose, whether you are one of society's more competent carpenters or one of its less competent carpenters? No, this is not about dogs eating other dogs. It is about human beings being allowed to make individual thinking, or maybe not thinking, choices. But the opportunity to exercise your own mind in making a choice is not a very canine characteristic. It is a human characteristic.

The free market gives those with great intelligence and those with less intelligence the opportunity to use their own mind, or to seek the counsel of those whose minds they think are better, to make decisions and choices. The free market ensures that many people are allowed the opportunity to offer others choices by making their ideas, goods, and services available and by advertising them to others. These days, with the use of the internet to enhance our ability to find these ideas, goods, and services, we are provided with an incredible wealth of such choices.

The socialist does not like the fact that there are so many choices. He does not like the fact that people advertise the choices they are offering you. He does not like the fact that some people may make more money from the ideas, goods, and services they offer others than will some other people. He believes that any discrepancy in the wealth earned in the free market is some instance of "social injustice", or as a child would put it, "that's not fair."

The socialist always wants us to forget that we are on both sides of the transactions we enter into in a free market. In some cases, we are the more or less competent and responsive provider and in other cases we are the more or less wise consumer. If we are not always the most competent or popular seller, we can at least have the chance to be a competent consumer of worthy ideas, goods, and services. We may make modest money as a worker and yet enjoy great home values, good mystery novels, the occasional good movie, the Redskins game, the medical treatments for cancer that save our lives, the car that lasts 13 years and 300,000 miles, and the fertilizer that both makes our grass turn greener and kills the weeds. You may not be top dog, but neither are you bottom dog. You have it pretty good because a lot of people, probably including you, are doing their best to make things available to others that they think they want.

What does the socialist offer instead of the free market? Generally he offers a law which reduces competition and the number of available options and choices. Each time he does so, if the socialism has yet to slide into dictatorship or rule by oligarchy, he replaces myriad individual choices and offerings with some common denominator offering of choices approved by a purality of voters. Thus, on a given issue, 49.9% of the voters may be left without the offerings and choices they want. Given that socialist government believes in passing as many laws as they can, if you consider that 60% of the voters favor each law on average and 40% oppose it, it is not long before most people are chained by numerous laws they do not like. In the free market, if they do not like what 50.1% of the vendors offer, they still have a rich selection of choices among the remaining 49.9% of the offerings. Instead of having no viable or satisfactory choice in anything, they most likely will have choices offered by someone which have some appeal. Under unlimited government, the government of the socialist, the average voter will soon find himself with no suitable choices for 40 or 45% of the offerings he would seek and find in the free market.

Democratic socialism is a return to high school clique society. There is the popular clique, which arbitrarily is favored, and there are those who just have no place at the cafeteria table with them. In fact, they see to that all tables that they do not occupy are removed from the cafeteria. In the free market, the popular clique may not want you at their table, but no one acts to prevent you from finding a table occupied by similarly rejected people. Of course, you do not reject one another. You are free to welcome one another and sit down and have a good time. But in the democratic socialist society, if you are not of the popular lowest common denominator group, you have no place anywhere. Government is all about the monopoly use of power and it will not tolerate competition or alternatives. Too bad, but you lost the election or your interests lost out when bill A was passed. That's it. That's final. You have no place at this or any other table.

The socialist enjoys forcibly transferring money from one group to another. The socialist commonly hates those who make the most money, unless of course, that group of moneymakers can be cultivated as campaign contributors to the socialist politicians or turned into a reason to hurt another group, the process of which provides the socialist with more power. So, wind mill power generators may be darlings for awhile, because they provide an excuse to go after the richer and bigger oil companies, coal mining companies, coal-fired power plants, the coal-hauling railroads, the coal carrying ship companies, the oil pipeline companies, the oil refiners, and much more. The socialist backs energy reduction schemes giving him the choices that would otherwise be exercised by individuals in the free market. The socialist gets to choose what power all individuals will have in their available choice set and acquires huge power for himself in the process.

The socialist reduces choice by saying that consumers must buy goods and services from companies to be taken over by labor unions who will provide their members with higher paying jobs. This is done by contributing large sums of union dues to socialist politicians who then protect the bloated and expensive companies from competition with various regulations. Or, the government provides laws that make people use the services of trial lawyers and accountants in many more cases than would otherwise make sense, resulting in a huge transfer of money from the average taxpayer to trial lawyers and accountants. The lawyers and accountants then become prime supporters of the socialist politicians, but the consumer is bled dry and cannot use his money for the things he really wants. The socialist reduces consumer choice by requiring him to buy health insurance and even setting up a limited number of approved health insurance plans, which some insurance companies will undoubtedly make major campaign fund contributions to get. Again, there will be a huge transfer of wealth to some favored insurance companies from others and from the wealthy in general.

The power the socialist wants is always gained by his taking control of our choices and by limiting the options we can exercise as individuals. The socialist puts each of us on chains and treats us like dogs. He gets us to let him do this commonly by turning us against one another. He turns the less well-off against the rich. He turns the females against the males. He turns the city people against the rural people, or the coastal people against the fly-over people, he turns the blue states against the red states, he turns the trial lawyers and the teachers unions against the people, he turns the blacks against the whites, he turns the young against the old, he turns debtors against creditors, he turns citizens against illegal immigrants by giving tax money to the illegal immigrants, he turns pro-abortion vs. anti-abortion people by having the government fund abortions, he turns employees against employers, he creates licensing requirements to limit entry for taxi-drivers, hairdressers, and interior decorators, and much, much more to limit and constrain our available choices. In the process, he sets us against one another in myriad ways, as dogs against dogs.

So, it is socialism which is the system of dog-eat-dog, not capitalism. Or viewed from the viewpoint of the socialist politician, his system is one of Master-Chains-Dogs-Who-Fight-Among-Themselves as he trains them to do so.

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