On the conservative quarrel with reason - Page 2 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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Traditional 'common sense' values and duty to the state.
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#15132205
Funny thing -- this post has nearly 2000 words.

Congratulations to us in really hitting the big post numbers.

This is ultimately why my posting has to have time in between -- I've been very busy lately, and these are big posts. I have another busy week so forgive me if it takes a long time to respond again.

ckaihatsu wrote:I have to mostly *disagree* here -- yes, there *are* federal labor standards (U.S.), but these are basically on-paper only, and the NLRB doesn't exactly represent *workers* interests in any disputes with the bosses.
The working class has an objective class interest in *no* national boundaries, because the work that workers do is basically the *same* no matter which country it may be located in. Militant labor organizations organize *across* national boundaries due to the *economics* of being laborers (wages, benefits, etc.). *Capital* is able to cross national borders, and does, and laborers shouuld *also* have the freedom to locate wherever they like for the sake of their own economic interests.

I disagree with this. There is nothing that inherently units the interests of a blue collar worker in Ohio and one in Honduras. Of course, they may be united in their basic humanity, and maybe even united across the borders through the chalice during Holy Communion, but ultimately, both workers want conditions of prosperity that may even actually be in conflict with one another. Both want prosperity, but this prosperity may actually come at the expense of the other, because there are only so many manufacturing jobs.
The obligation of the US government and the American people is foremost to themselves, and then to the rest of the world. Not because the rest of the world is our enemy, but because we best serve our own interests through directly working to serve them ourselves. Each locality has some responsibility to itself.

ckaihatsu wrote:Sorry, but I can't just agree with this on the basis of your say-so -- maybe you could provide some *reasoning*, or *examples*, for your summary comparison of religion to Marxism -- ?
I have to reiterate that Marxism is based on an observation of the empirical / real-world *class divide*, which is *not* a matter of 'faith'. I have no problems working with militant laborers who may happen to be religious, if we're all facing in the same direction, but I have distinctly *atheist* philosophical roots myself.

Here is what I wrote in post #15,130,539:

[
Verv wrote: If we take anything based on faith to be like a religion, then there is always a sort of ascendant value-system, based on faith, indistinguishable from religion, at the top.
All politics is reducible to theocracy. it only appears to not be theocracy when it is contrasted explicitly with religion.


So, Marxism believes that there ought to be some form of equal distribution of resources, in things like the theory of the alienation of labor, etc. There are plenty of assumptions worked into how they approach the world.

These assumptions are not actually different from any religious assumptions, other than the fact that they just aren’t actually religious.

But these assumptions do not become empirical because they are simply secular.

ckaihatsu wrote:If that 'one's private property' could be interpreted to mean one's *personal* property -- the items that one actually *uses* oneself -- then I would have no differences here, but if 'private property' means *capital accumulations* then it actually *encourages* the furtherance of the class divide. In particular it's the private property of society's means of mass *industrial* production that is most at-issue to Marxist politics / worldview.


I do not have a strong opinion on this. I am, of course, not a Communist, but I do not feel particularly passionate about protecting mass accumulation of wealth and capital. That does not strike me as a completely inalienable right.

ckaihatsu wrote:What about values of *honesty*, sound observation, reasoning ability, objectivity in investigation, imagination / conceptualization, experimentation, confirmation / verification, etc.?

I have a usable framework that's based on the scientific method, btw:


I can honestly say that any view that says that the mundane reality of the world is the only reality is incomplete.

You appear to fully agree with me – you are always talking about worker’s rights and bringing up very broad, general statements that have no basis in reality, “laborers shouuld *also* have the freedom to locate wherever they like for the sake of their own economic interests.”
These are not principles rooted in the science that you would appeal to in other circumstances.
You may say that it is ‘sound reasoning.’ But then, that is what the religious also are always engaging in. Sound reasoning is incredibly subjective.

ckaihatsu wrote:I have to ask, though, why does *government* need to be allowed religious expression and values? Isn't it merely a socio-political *function*, and could operate *generically*, meaning secularly, meaning scientifically, as it mostly does? I don't mean to say that I *agree* with bourgeois government premises, since they serve the interests of the bourgeois *ruling class*, but I do appreciate the Enlightenment worldview, that had to break out of the shell of monastic Christianity since the fall of the Roman Empire.


That is a great question…
So, I think it is the enlightenment position that the government is simply there to mediate our “rights” (whatever those are), and solve disputes in the marketplace
I think a more original view of government is that the monarch is a sort of vox dei or willed ruler on Earth. Even when he is wrong or a tyrant, he is a representative of the great order that exists beyond nature. That is not to say that tyrants should not be toppled, for there is no good argument to make based on Biblical principles on that, and you can even see this discussion occurring among Confucianists at some points.

Prior to the modern era, the government was an extension of Heaven, and the country was like a family. Still, people believe in things like this, even in secular societies. A good example of that is Hillary Clinton’s book “It Takes A Village.”
So, forgive me for going too long…
I think it is natural for the government to acknowledge God, and a state religion, and for the leader to be part of ceremonial expressions. Because the whole universe exists under Heaven, and the monarch is a representative of God on earth, so to speak, and this is also true of a President of a republic, or in any form of government. We only began stripping this away from government recently.
ckaihatsu wrote:Okay, so then how would a proposed Christian government handle *civil* marriages and divorces, for example? Or, perhaps, more crucially, what about *incarceration*?


I think you could come up with a way to make people who are Catholic or Orthodox to be married within the regulations and authority of their Bishops, and to also extend this to other religions, and have the Judge interact with declarations of the Bishops on these matters when settling issues independent of the Chruch, like the division of wealth when a divorce is granted.

Of course, people who have been excommunicated or who were born outside of the Church would have recourse to purely civil marriage unions.

I think incarceration would be trusted to occur just as it does in any modern state, with perhaps two exceptions:
(i) We would have to allow for people to claim sanctuary in religious institutions.
(ii) We may have to stipulate that the death penalty be outlawed in some of our Christian societies, as well as things like torture.

ckaihatsu wrote:And what is society / humanity to do when various nationalist kings / monarchs get into *disputes* with each other, as over territory, natural resources, etc. -- ? To me this is just a different form of elitist class rule, because, without democracy, most people will have *zero* say in how these critical social dynamics / policies play-out, even though such *affects* every last person within the nation-state.

Again you need to provide more backing than just your say-so.


I can only provide my theoretical take on this.

As it stands, 20th century secular states went to war and sent people to die for things that weren’t in their interests. I do not think that any such burden of achieving perfection in this regards would apply to more traditional forms of government.

ckaihatsu wrote:Isn't this, then, an argument for a liberal welfare-state kind of economics? Regulated markets, basically, which is what we have today, more-or-less, and *class rule* which favors the interests of corporations and of the wealthy.


I do not buy into the idea of class warfare. I think everyone should work, and I think there should be some sort of welfare state… But I do not necessarily accept the idea that there is some evil, shady group of Capitalists who want to crush us. I think they are actually trying to generally improve the world – failing regularly, yes, and being greedy? Sure, but this is also something that we see on a small scale.

Now, I will say this… If I was a Filipino or a Vietnamese or Indian person, I am sure I would have a hell of a lot more to say about class struggle.

Capitalism worked for the Americans and the Koreans. So, my criticisms of the system are not harsh at all. I guess I would advise other people to pursue policies like the South Koreans, who modernized and became wealthy quickly, but I do understand this visceral hatred of the wealthy by those who are born into such terrible circumstances. It’s very natural, and I am sure that, in some cases, the elites have exploited their advantage to just become marginally wealthier while stepping on the necks of common people.

This is maybe something of a cop-out answer, but I guess I have to give this anti-climactic response of “I am not a Communist or a Socialist, but I get it…”

ckaihatsu wrote:Okay, please see the previous segment, and I'll ask you to address the phenomenon / dynamic of the *class divide*. Since you support monarchical-type administration, do you think that such class elitism is *acceptable*? *Desirable*? *Better*?

How would you balance this with the treatment of the working-class issue, from earlier in the post? What would your preferences be between the interests of the ruling class (administrators / bureaucracy / elites / royals / etc.), against the interests of the *working class* (higher wages, more benefits, more social infrastructure in common, etc.) -- ?


A great question.

It makes sense to me that there will be millionaires, and there will be people who are very well compensated for their work and investments. I do not see a reason to eliminate the existence of such people, because often times their wealth is deeply tied into investments and is not liquid. I also think many of them use their wealth in positive ways.

Of course, the government is duty bound to treat the poorest as their primary clients. Those left behind by the economy ought to be given a strong social safety net, and measures must be taken to ensure equal footing in opportunities.

If we are talking about a state that has outright starvation and extreme poverty while elites live like pigs in palaces, to paraphrase Ceaucescu, then I honestly would support the monarch engaging in a form of class warfare against them. Not with the goal of the elimination of the free market or of there never being wealthy people who own businesses again, but out of the interest of making them pay for bleeding the country dry.

But, ideally, a good government would already regulate things and establish a system of taxation that properly took from those who are making excessive profits and reinvesting it in the regular people.

Because monarchy does have this advantage: the merchant has to serve the will of God and the King, and come to the aid of the society, and those who do not can be held accountable.
#15132386
Verv wrote:
Funny thing -- this post has nearly 2000 words.

Congratulations to us in really hitting the big post numbers.



Yay, "us"! Should we get t-shirts made? (grin)


Verv wrote:
This is ultimately why my posting has to have time in between -- I've been very busy lately, and these are big posts. I have another busy week so forgive me if it takes a long time to respond again.



Hey, I *know* how IRL can be, so you don't have to explain. Maybe the politicians will be able to do something about it one day....


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
I have to mostly *disagree* here -- yes, there *are* federal labor standards (U.S.), but these are basically on-paper only, and the NLRB doesn't exactly represent *workers* interests in any disputes with the bosses.
The working class has an objective class interest in *no* national boundaries, because the work that workers do is basically the *same* no matter which country it may be located in. Militant labor organizations organize *across* national boundaries due to the *economics* of being laborers (wages, benefits, etc.). *Capital* is able to cross national borders, and does, and laborers shouuld *also* have the freedom to locate wherever they like for the sake of their own economic interests.



Verv wrote:
I disagree with this. There is nothing that inherently units the interests of a blue collar worker in Ohio and one in Honduras. Of course, they may be united in their basic humanity, and maybe even united across the borders through the chalice during Holy Communion, but ultimately, both workers want conditions of prosperity that may even actually be in conflict with one another. Both want prosperity, but this prosperity may actually come at the expense of the other, because there are only so many manufacturing jobs.



This is a common misnomer, unfortunately -- in reality the number of available jobs has more to do with *profitability*, than anything else, so the number of jobs is dependent on the boom-and-bust cycle of the overall capitalist economy.


Verv wrote:
The obligation of the US government and the American people is foremost to themselves, and then to the rest of the world. Not because the rest of the world is our enemy, but because we best serve our own interests through directly working to serve them ourselves. Each locality has some responsibility to itself.



The real interests of 'we' isn't based on *geography*, it's based on *class interests* -- whether that worker is located in the U.S., Honduras, Mexico, or anywhere else. A dollar from revenue that goes to the bosses for their profits is a dollar that *cannot* go to any worker, for their wages.


[11] Labor & Capital, Wages & Dividends

Spoiler: show
Image



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Here's a fairly recent example from Mexican workers, regarding U.S. and Canadian workers, all in the same industry:



The economy of the city is significantly based on its international trade with the United States through the USMCA agreement,[9] and it is home to one of the most promising industrial sectors in Mexico,[10] mainly due to the presence of maquiladoras.[11] In Matamoros, the automotive industry hosts the assembly and accessories plants for brands such as General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, BMW, and Mercedes Benz.[12][13]



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matamoros ... ial_sector




For joint action of US, Canadian and Mexican workers

Defend the Matamoros workers!

WSWS Autoworker Newsletter

12 March 2019

Two months into the wave of wildcat strikes that has gripped Matamoros, Mexico, US and other foreign-owned corporations, along with the Mexican ruling class, are carrying out collective punishment against the courageous workers in the city, across the border from Brownsville, Texas. The workers have been subjected to mass layoffs, physical attacks and blacklisting because they had the audacity to fight against poverty wages and sweatshop conditions in the factories that produce parts for Ford, GM, Fiat Chrysler and other auto and appliance makers.

The alarm must be raised! The World Socialist Web Site Autoworker Newsletter calls on workers throughout the US and Canada to come to the defense of their class brothers and sisters across the border. If the reprisals are not stopped, tens of thousands of workers and their families will be hurled into destitution and raw material for super-exploitation for years to come.

Since January 12, as many as 70,000 workers at Matamoros maquiladora factories have been engaged in a collective revolt, raising the demand for “20-32,” i.e., a 20 percent wage increase and a 32,000-peso ($1,700) bonus. Autoworkers in the US and Canada have been inspired by Mexican workers’ defiance of the pro-company trade unions and their initial steps toward forming independent rank-and-file organizations.

Terrified that similar strikes and actions will spread throughout Mexico and across the border, the ruling class is responding with mass firings, plant closings and thug attacks. The companies, the Mexican government and the unions are all seeking to make an example of the strikers in order to show that any opposition to the dictates of the corporations will be met with brutal countermeasures.



https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2019/0 ... a-m12.html



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ckaihatsu wrote:
Sorry, but I can't just agree with this on the basis of your say-so -- maybe you could provide some *reasoning*, or *examples*, for your summary comparison of religion to Marxism -- ?

I have to reiterate that Marxism is based on an observation of the empirical / real-world *class divide*, which is *not* a matter of 'faith'. I have no problems working with militant laborers who may happen to be religious, if we're all facing in the same direction, but I have distinctly *atheist* philosophical roots myself.


universal context

Spoiler: show
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Verv wrote:
Here is what I wrote in post #15,130,539:


Verv wrote:
If we take anything based on faith to be like a religion, then there is always a sort of ascendant value-system, based on faith, indistinguishable from religion, at the top.
All politics is reducible to theocracy. it only appears to not be theocracy when it is contrasted explicitly with religion.



If a political ideology can be said to be based on *faith*, then why is there so much real-world *reasoning* surrounding it? I've been around revolutionary politics for over 30 years and I've *never* seen any religious precept given as the basis for Marxism, working-class power, proletarian revolution, etc.


Verv wrote:
So, Marxism believes that there ought to be some form of equal distribution of resources, in things like the theory of the alienation of labor, etc. There are plenty of assumptions worked into how they approach the world.

These assumptions are not actually different from any religious assumptions, other than the fact that they just aren’t actually religious.

But these assumptions do not become empirical because they are simply secular.



So what are these claimed 'assumptions', then? (I'm on the edge of my chair.) (grin)


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
If that 'one's private property' could be interpreted to mean one's *personal* property -- the items that one actually *uses* oneself -- then I would have no differences here, but if 'private property' means *capital accumulations* then it actually *encourages* the furtherance of the class divide. In particular it's the private property of society's means of mass *industrial* production that is most at-issue to Marxist politics / worldview.



Verv wrote:
I do not have a strong opinion on this. I am, of course, not a Communist, but I do not feel particularly passionate about protecting mass accumulation of wealth and capital. That does not strike me as a completely inalienable right.



Okay, that's good, and encouraging. Maybe you could also edge away from your affinity to *nationalism* as well, especially since all politicians are themselves wealthy, and govern in the interests of the bourgeois / propertied *ruling class*.


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
What about values of *honesty*, sound observation, reasoning ability, objectivity in investigation, imagination / conceptualization, experimentation, confirmation / verification, etc.?

I have a usable framework that's based on the scientific method, btw:


universal paradigm SLIDES TEMPLATE

Spoiler: show
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universal paradigm DATABASE

Spoiler: show
Image



Verv wrote:
I can honestly say that any view that says that the mundane reality of the world is the only reality is incomplete.

You appear to fully agree with me – you are always talking about worker’s rights and bringing up very broad, general statements that have no basis in reality, “laborers shouuld *also* have the freedom to locate wherever they like for the sake of their own economic interests.”
These are not principles rooted in the science that you would appeal to in other circumstances.
You may say that it is ‘sound reasoning.’ But then, that is what the religious also are always engaging in. Sound reasoning is incredibly subjective.



I'll suggest that what you're distinguishing here is *empiricism* (mundane information about the world), versus *science* (verified knowledge, like that of the class divide), versus 'cognitivism', meaning one's own understanding of what knowledge / science to *select*, and use in one's life.


philosophical abstractions

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ckaihatsu wrote:
I have to ask, though, why does *government* need to be allowed religious expression and values? Isn't it merely a socio-political *function*, and could operate *generically*, meaning secularly, meaning scientifically, as it mostly does? I don't mean to say that I *agree* with bourgeois government premises, since they serve the interests of the bourgeois *ruling class*, but I do appreciate the Enlightenment worldview, that had to break out of the shell of monastic Christianity since the fall of the Roman Empire.



Verv wrote:
That is a great question…
So, I think it is the enlightenment position that the government is simply there to mediate our “rights” (whatever those are), and solve disputes in the marketplace
I think a more original view of government is that the monarch is a sort of vox dei or willed ruler on Earth. Even when he is wrong or a tyrant, he is a representative of the great order that exists beyond nature. That is not to say that tyrants should not be toppled, for there is no good argument to make based on Biblical principles on that, and you can even see this discussion occurring among Confucianists at some points.



Well, with this position, though, you're effectively *tolerating* a standard of top-down elitist rule, for the most part.

I'll counterpose the legacy of the Enlightenment and bourgeois-democratic rule, which have demonstrated that the populace can *at least* mass-determine *who* their leadership should be, as in the bourgeois revolutions (England, America, France), which *overthrew* monarchical top-down rule.

China's history features fierce anti-colonial movements as well, which repelled British, French, U.S., and Japanese imperialism -- the May Fourth Movement in particular:



The May Fourth Movement was an anti-imperialist, cultural, and political movement which grew out of student protests in Beijing on 4 May 1919.

In retaliation to the Chinese government's weak response to the Treaty of Versailles, students protested against the government's decision to allow Japan to retain territories in Shandong that had been surrendered by Germany after the Siege of Tsingtao in 1914. The demonstrations sparked nation-wide protests and spurred an upsurge in Chinese nationalism, a shift towards political mobilization, a shift away from cultural activities, a move towards a mass base and a move away from traditional intellectual and political elites.

Many radical, political, and social leaders of the next five decades emerged at this time. In a broader sense, the term "May Fourth Movement" is often used to refer to the period during 1915–1921 more often called the "New Culture Movement".



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/May_Fourth_Movement



---


Verv wrote:
Prior to the modern era, the government was an extension of Heaven, and the country was like a family. Still, people believe in things like this, even in secular societies. A good example of that is Hillary Clinton’s book “It Takes A Village.”
So, forgive me for going too long…
I think it is natural for the government to acknowledge God, and a state religion, and for the leader to be part of ceremonial expressions. Because the whole universe exists under Heaven, and the monarch is a representative of God on earth, so to speak, and this is also true of a President of a republic, or in any form of government. We only began stripping this away from government recently.



No, actually, monarchs were overthrown in the previously mentioned bourgeois revolutions, including also in Russia, and China.

Wouldn't you rather have *bottom-up* politics (democracy, proletarian control of industrial mass production), than *top-down* politics (monarchies, aristocracies)?


You just outlined the economic *benefit*, here:


Verv wrote:
So, I think it is the enlightenment position that the government is simply there to mediate our “rights” (whatever those are), and solve disputes in the marketplace



The 'marketplace' is relatively more economically advanced and dynamic than anything a *monarch*, or royal court, could pull off. If you argue for monarchism you're arguing for a big backwards step economically, to *feudalism* and *slavery*.


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
Okay, so then how would a proposed Christian government handle *civil* marriages and divorces, for example? Or, perhaps, more crucially, what about *incarceration*?



Verv wrote:
I think you could come up with a way to make people who are Catholic or Orthodox to be married within the regulations and authority of their Bishops, and to also extend this to other religions, and have the Judge interact with declarations of the Bishops on these matters when settling issues independent of the Chruch, like the division of wealth when a divorce is granted.

Of course, people who have been excommunicated or who were born outside of the Church would have recourse to purely civil marriage unions.

I think incarceration would be trusted to occur just as it does in any modern state, with perhaps two exceptions:
(i) We would have to allow for people to claim sanctuary in religious institutions.
(ii) We may have to stipulate that the death penalty be outlawed in some of our Christian societies, as well as things like torture.



And who's 'we' here? You're for *monarchical* rule, but how would this miniature Bill of Rights be included exactly?


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
And what is society / humanity to do when various nationalist kings / monarchs get into *disputes* with each other, as over territory, natural resources, etc. -- ? To me this is just a different form of elitist class rule, because, without democracy, most people will have *zero* say in how these critical social dynamics / policies play-out, even though such *affects* every last person within the nation-state.

Again you need to provide more backing than just your say-so.



Verv wrote:
I can only provide my theoretical take on this.

As it stands, 20th century secular states went to war and sent people to die for things that weren’t in their interests. I do not think that any such burden of achieving perfection in this regards would apply to more traditional forms of government.



You're making it sound, just on your say-so, that a more balkanized global patchwork of smaller nation-states would somehow be better than how the world is today -- but the feudal monarchical states of *Europe* had *plenty* of warfare from the 14th century onwards.

I'm certainly not going to defend modern nationalist imperialism, as evidenced in the two world wars of the 20th century, but I *am* going to point out that the nation-state composition of (relative) social order is *anachronistic*, and has been, since the fall of feudalism / slavery, and particularly with the productive prowess of *industrialization* / mass-production. That's why 'governance' so-to-speak, should be with the *workers* who are the ones actually *producing* the stuff that we all need for our modern lives and living.


---


ckaihatsu wrote:
Isn't this, then, an argument for a liberal welfare-state kind of economics? Regulated markets, basically, which is what we have today, more-or-less, and *class rule* which favors the interests of corporations and of the wealthy.



Verv wrote:
I do not buy into the idea of class warfare.



Earlier-on in your post you said this:


Verv wrote:
I do not have a strong opinion on this. I am, of course, not a Communist, but I do not feel particularly passionate about protecting mass accumulation of wealth and capital. That does not strike me as a completely inalienable right.



So would you at least *stand aside* while the workers of the world *settle scores* with those who have backed imperialism and political exceptionalism for the imperialist militarist use of organized violence around the world?


Verv wrote:
I think everyone should work, and I think there should be some sort of welfare state… But I do not necessarily accept the idea that there is some evil, shady group of Capitalists who want to crush us. I think they are actually trying to generally improve the world – failing regularly, yes, and being greedy? Sure, but this is also something that we see on a small scale.



Can we simplify this and agree that those with capital are using that capital to make *profits* for themselves? I don't think that capitalists are out to *improve*, or *ruin*, any people, or part of the globe, but what *results*, in fact, *is* the ruination of many people in many countries due to the capitalist *profit-making* economic motivation on the part of those with sizeable ownership of capital.


Verv wrote:
Now, I will say this… If I was a Filipino or a Vietnamese or Indian person, I am sure I would have a hell of a lot more to say about class struggle.

Capitalism worked for the Americans and the Koreans. So, my criticisms of the system are not harsh at all. I guess I would advise other people to pursue policies like the South Koreans, who modernized and became wealthy quickly, but I do understand this visceral hatred of the wealthy by those who are born into such terrible circumstances. It’s very natural, and I am sure that, in some cases, the elites have exploited their advantage to just become marginally wealthier while stepping on the necks of common people.

This is maybe something of a cop-out answer, but I guess I have to give this anti-climactic response of “I am not a Communist or a Socialist, but I get it…”



Do you have anything to say about the Korean War, or the Vietnam War? (Or the Spanish-American War, or the British Raj?)


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Okay, please see the previous segment, and I'll ask you to address the phenomenon / dynamic of the *class divide*. Since you support monarchical-type administration, do you think that such class elitism is *acceptable*? *Desirable*? *Better*?

How would you balance this with the treatment of the working-class issue, from earlier in the post? What would your preferences be between the interests of the ruling class (administrators / bureaucracy / elites / royals / etc.), against the interests of the *working class* (higher wages, more benefits, more social infrastructure in common, etc.) -- ?



Verv wrote:
A great question.

It makes sense to me that there will be millionaires, and there will be people who are very well compensated for their work and investments. I do not see a reason to eliminate the existence of such people, because often times their wealth is deeply tied into investments and is not liquid. I also think many of them use their wealth in positive ways.

Of course, the government is duty bound to treat the poorest as their primary clients. Those left behind by the economy ought to be given a strong social safety net, and measures must be taken to ensure equal footing in opportunities.

If we are talking about a state that has outright starvation and extreme poverty while elites live like pigs in palaces, to paraphrase Ceaucescu, then I honestly would support the monarch engaging in a form of class warfare against them. Not with the goal of the elimination of the free market or of there never being wealthy people who own businesses again, but out of the interest of making them pay for bleeding the country dry.



Do you have any comment on offshore *tax havens* or corporate *money laundering*?


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tax_haven

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panama_Papers

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/ja ... l-networks


Verv wrote:
But, ideally, a good government would already regulate things and establish a system of taxation that properly took from those who are making excessive profits and reinvesting it in the regular people.

Because monarchy does have this advantage: the merchant has to serve the will of God and the King, and come to the aid of the society, and those who do not can be held accountable.



*Or*, with popular mass involvement, as through journalism, *everyone* could keep tabs on what the private sector, and government, are doing, so as to have a more bottom-up political process, and so to not be dependent on a likely *bottlenecked* royal court for the same.
#15134991
ckaihatsu wrote:Yay, "us"! Should we get t-shirts made? (grin)


LOL, I could use one.

ckaihatsu wrote:This is a common misnomer, unfortunately -- in reality the number of available jobs has more to do with *profitability*, than anything else, so the number of jobs is dependent on the boom-and-bust cycle of the overall capitalist economy.


This makes sense.

I guess, I would say that I think that the existence of jobs in the private market is based on whether or not people can continue generating a profit from some form of labor. Of course, people are not perfect and do not see every opportunity, but anyone who has walked the crowded streets of an Asian market knows that niches do get filled pretty fast.

ckaihatsu wrote:The real interests of 'we' isn't based on *geography*, it's based on *class interests* -- whether that worker is located in the U.S., Honduras, Mexico, or anywhere else. A dollar from revenue that goes to the bosses for their profits is a dollar that *cannot* go to any worker, for their wages.


I would say that my own interests extend beyond my finances. Of course, my basic needs are the most important thing to me, and I do want to maximize my income, but there are a lot of other things important to me.

One can even look at the recent US Presidential election as having a lot of issues decided by non-economic things.

There is also the idea that sometimes our own economic interests are tied to things that are not even necessarily economic. Many fear that other groups practice in-group preference, and so they do not want foreigners controlling their economy or stealing their jobs. This is not just a theme in the Western world, but has also been seen all throughout southeast Asia with the contentious relations between Chinese immigrants and the locals.


ckaihatsu wrote:Here's a fairly recent example from Mexican workers, regarding U.S. and Canadian workers, all in the same industry:


(Examples of workers united in Canada/US/Mexico)

I can see why these labor movements do inspire each other and set precedents. It is even the case that, in a global economy, the cost of labor and living standards will greatly affect one another. But this is just one example, and there are many other factors.

A cynic might even say that these laborers in the US & Canada are supportive of the Mexican labor demands because the more that they get paid, the more likely that these jobs could go to Canada & the US as the labor costs become too great.

ckaihatsu wrote:If a political ideology can be said to be based on *faith*, then why is there so much real-world *reasoning* surrounding it? I've been around revolutionary politics for over 30 years and I've *never* seen any religious precept given as the basis for Marxism, working-class power, proletarian revolution, etc.


There is lots of real world reasoning involved in religion as well. There are entire Islamic courts of jurisprudence that discuss things like the illegal downloading of MP3s. The thing is, their value system is just based on a different set of givens.

Marxism will have its own set of assumptions on what is really happening, and what each person merits.


ckaihatsu wrote:So what are these claimed 'assumptions', then? (I'm on the edge of my chair.) (grin)


Historical materialism, or the theory of alienation, the ideas surrounding the polarization of the classes or that class itself is produced from conflict are all examples of theories that involve faith, and this brings us to really basic ideas taken on faith...

That all men across the world have the same interests if they are the same class; that there really should only be a single class of men, that we can and should progress towards a pretty Utopian state of being.

It can even be said that materialism itself is taken on faith.

ckaihatsu wrote:Okay, that's good, and encouraging. Maybe you could also edge away from your affinity to *nationalism* as well, especially since all politicians are themselves wealthy, and govern in the interests of the bourgeois / propertied *ruling class*.


Except when they are Communist, right? Then they rule for the Communist party.

ckaihatsu wrote:I'll suggest that what you're distinguishing here is *empiricism* (mundane information about the world), versus *science* (verified knowledge, like that of the class divide), versus 'cognitivism', meaning one's own understanding of what knowledge / science to *select*, and use in one's life.


As scientific truth is going to only be based on the mundane, empirical knowledge that is gleaned, I think it is not a necessary distinction.

I am a big fan of Wittgenstein's observation that we just cannot know anything of actual meaning for sure, and all that is certain is mundane.

ckaihatsu wrote:Well, with this position, though, you're effectively *tolerating* a standard of top-down elitist rule, for the most part.

I'll counterpose the legacy of the Enlightenment and bourgeois-democratic rule, which have demonstrated that the populace can *at least* mass-determine *who* their leadership should be, as in the bourgeois revolutions (England, America, France), which *overthrew* monarchical top-down rule.


These are oligarchs concentrating all power into the hands of a single class of men -- the merchants. Prior to this, there really was something more akin to a separation of the powers through the various estates that existed in European society, and now there really is just rule by the burghars.

You have a lot of faith if you think that liberal democracies truly reflect the will of the people.

I would say that the will of the people itself is an illusion.

ckaihatsu wrote:China's history features fierce anti-colonial movements as well, which repelled British, French, U.S., and Japanese imperialism -- the May Fourth Movement in particular:


And China also basically extracted massive tributes from countries like Korea, conquered its neighbors, etc. This is not so glorious to me -- it's one classical hierarchy resisting another classical hierarchy. Of course, there is something inherently romantic about the people resisting outside, foreign invasion, but it becomes a lot less interesting when you think of it more like the British & the French fighting and a lot less like evil white people trying to enslave brown people.


ckaihatsu wrote:No, actually, monarchs were overthrown in the previously mentioned bourgeois revolutions, including also in Russia, and China.

Wouldn't you rather have *bottom-up* politics (democracy, proletarian control of industrial mass production), than *top-down* politics (monarchies, aristocracies)?


I believe it is the case that monarchy was based too much on the old economic forms, and when capitalists became far more moneyed, they were more competitive and able to overthrow them. It is also the case that different royalist regimes tried to cut deals with merchants, and these created their own sorts of disasters...

But, ultimately, the big weakness was that, while monarchy did tend towards more absolutism, it was still somewhat based on feudalism, which was dead, and it did not do a good job of replacing feudalism with other power sharing schemes.

I think it may even be the case that, living through the 2020 election, there will be an increase of people who are naturally skeptical of liberal democracy, and there is a greater case for pointing out its failures. There could be more people interested in a more dynamic power sharing scheme and having the certainty of a monarch who can stand back and monitor what democratic and constitutional processes exist properly.


ckaihatsu wrote:The 'marketplace' is relatively more economically advanced and dynamic than anything a *monarch*, or royal court, could pull off. If you argue for monarchism you're arguing for a big backwards step economically, to *feudalism* and *slavery*.


Monarchy does not have to function on top of feudalism.

ckaihatsu wrote:And who's 'we' here? You're for *monarchical* rule, but how would this miniature Bill of Rights be included exactly?


Just ask the British how they do it.

As it stands, all of these monarchical societies had different groups with invested rights that the King could not freely circumvent. This was the tragedy of Hungary -- the local lords had too much power, and the King couldn't do much. The Kings of England, Spain, and France were constantly fighting with their nobles, the clergy, and the burghars for taxation and money...

And, while tyranny did exist, even individual citizens had recognized rights that the King or no other person could violate. Tyranny existed because the usual circumstances which create despotism existed, but when things were working smoothly, there were invested rights that the King could not even violate.

The l'etat c'est moi! attitude is something that developed later. Prior to this, Kings thought of themselves as Christ's vicar on earth, and would try to uphold their religious obligations, and rule for the benefit of their people, often thinking this is the only way for them to get to heaven (and this is right).

This is not even exclusive to the Christian west. This sort of high idealism was present everywhere.

I think we should appraise monarchy by how it can work, and how it is likely to work in a developed society, and not by how it works in the lowest form.

If you are a Communist, I would imagine you would be sympathetic to that in light of Communism's track record.

ckaihatsu wrote:You're making it sound, just on your say-so, that a more balkanized global patchwork of smaller nation-states would somehow be better than how the world is today -- but the feudal monarchical states of *Europe* had *plenty* of warfare from the 14th century onwards.


The factors that caused these wars are no longer relevant.

ckaihatsu wrote:I'm certainly not going to defend modern nationalist imperialism, as evidenced in the two world wars of the 20th century, but I *am* going to point out that the nation-state composition of (relative) social order is *anachronistic*, and has been, since the fall of feudalism / slavery, and particularly with the productive prowess of *industrialization* / mass-production. That's why 'governance' so-to-speak, should be with the *workers* who are the ones actually *producing* the stuff that we all need for our modern lives and living.


The nation-state, or even the empire, does not necessarily cause war, or impact the people who live in them negatively.

I just do not even really see an alternative.


ckaihatsu wrote:So would you at least *stand aside* while the workers of the world *settle scores* with those who have backed imperialism and political exceptionalism for the imperialist militarist use of organized violence around the world?


I think the people who, say, used the US military to invade Iraq or to fight in other circumstances are actually so few in number that there's no reason for them to not be given a trial.


ckaihatsu wrote:Can we simplify this and agree that those with capital are using that capital to make *profits* for themselves? I don't think that capitalists are out to *improve*, or *ruin*, any people, or part of the globe, but what *results*, in fact, *is* the ruination of many people in many countries due to the capitalist *profit-making* economic motivation on the part of those with sizeable ownership of capital.


I think that getting wealthy is the primary motive. Just as such, I think a great deal many doctors are primarily motivated by the paycheck and nice life that being a doctor affords...

But this does not change the fact that many of them also want to make a good product, improve people's lives, and feel like they left the world a better place, just like all of us want to.

ckaihatsu wrote:Do you have anything to say about the Korean War, or the Vietnam War? (Or the Spanish-American War, or the British Raj?)


The Korean war was caused largely by the Soviet Union not wanting to allow a democratic union of Korea.

I think the other wars would require more specialized knowledge than what I have and I am not about to start getting into a Wikipedia-driven online argument about them. ^^

ckaihatsu wrote:Do you have any comment on offshore *tax havens* or corporate *money laundering*?


This is, of course, very wrong, and amounts to stealing from the people.

ckaihatsu wrote:*Or*, with popular mass involvement, as through journalism, *everyone* could keep tabs on what the private sector, and government, are doing, so as to have a more bottom-up political process, and so to not be dependent on a likely *bottlenecked* royal court for the same.


I think that the issue here is that you think of a monarchy in very cartoonish terms, and not as something that can function very similar to what is going on in the UK right now, just with a lot more power in the monarch as the executive and also as a competent legislator.
#15135142
ckaihatsu wrote:
Yay, "us"! Should we get t-shirts made? (grin)



Verv wrote:
LOL, I could use one.



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ckaihatsu wrote:
I have to mostly *disagree* here -- yes, there *are* federal labor standards (U.S.), but these are basically on-paper only, and the NLRB doesn't exactly represent *workers* interests in any disputes with the bosses.

The working class has an objective class interest in *no* national boundaries, because the work that workers do is basically the *same* no matter which country it may be located in. Militant labor organizations organize *across* national boundaries due to the *economics* of being laborers (wages, benefits, etc.). *Capital* is able to cross national borders, and does, and laborers shouuld *also* have the freedom to locate wherever they like for the sake of their own economic interests.



Verv wrote:
I disagree with this. There is nothing that inherently units the interests of a blue collar worker in Ohio and one in Honduras. Of course, they may be united in their basic humanity, and maybe even united across the borders through the chalice during Holy Communion, but ultimately, both workers want conditions of prosperity that may even actually be in conflict with one another. Both want prosperity, but this prosperity may actually come at the expense of the other, because there are only so many manufacturing jobs.



ckaihatsu wrote:
This is a common misnomer, unfortunately -- in reality the number of available jobs has more to do with *profitability*, than anything else, so the number of jobs is dependent on the boom-and-bust cycle of the overall capitalist economy.



Verv wrote:
This makes sense.

I guess, I would say that I think that the existence of jobs in the private market is based on whether or not people can continue generating a profit from some form of labor. Of course, people are not perfect and do not see every opportunity, but anyone who has walked the crowded streets of an Asian market knows that niches do get filled pretty fast.



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Verv wrote:
The obligation of the US government and the American people is foremost to themselves, and then to the rest of the world. Not because the rest of the world is our enemy, but because we best serve our own interests through directly working to serve them ourselves. Each locality has some responsibility to itself.



ckaihatsu wrote:
The real interests of 'we' isn't based on *geography*, it's based on *class interests* -- whether that worker is located in the U.S., Honduras, Mexico, or anywhere else. A dollar from revenue that goes to the bosses for their profits is a dollar that *cannot* go to any worker, for their wages.



Verv wrote:
I would say that my own interests extend beyond my finances. Of course, my basic needs are the most important thing to me, and I do want to maximize my income, but there are a lot of other things important to me.

One can even look at the recent US Presidential election as having a lot of issues decided by non-economic things.

There is also the idea that sometimes our own economic interests are tied to things that are not even necessarily economic. Many fear that other groups practice in-group preference, and so they do not want foreigners controlling their economy or stealing their jobs. This is not just a theme in the Western world, but has also been seen all throughout southeast Asia with the contentious relations between Chinese immigrants and the locals.



I'll agree that the overall trend during the Trump Administration has been towards *localization* / balkanization / isolationism, but the world's already been globalized, so a globalized capitalist economy of some kind is going to outlive Trump's counter-globalization-tending term in office.

That said empirically, though, I'll reiterate / explain that geography alone is no basis for determining a personal or 'entity' interests, even though it feels intuitive and natural to think in terms of localist geography. This is because of *class* -- not everyone in a geographical entity ('nation', etc.) has the same material interests -- some are owners, some are laborers.

Socialists point to the mismatch, and *tension*, between the empirical reality of a 'universal'-type capitalist economy everywhere, and the *patchwork* landscape of separate governments / nation-states that *administrate* over the economy in various places.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Here's a fairly recent example from Mexican workers, regarding U.S. and Canadian workers, all in the same industry:



Verv wrote:
(Examples of workers united in Canada/US/Mexico)

I can see why these labor movements do inspire each other and set precedents. It is even the case that, in a global economy, the cost of labor and living standards will greatly affect one another. But this is just one example, and there are many other factors.

A cynic might even say that these laborers in the US & Canada are supportive of the Mexican labor demands because the more that they get paid, the more likely that these jobs could go to Canada & the US as the labor costs become too great.



Historically the industrial jobs went to *China* because the labor costs there were even less than the cost of labor in Mexico. Nonetheless, since capitalist economics itself encourages beating-the-market kinds of economic behavior, through cartels, combinations, oligopolies, price-fixing, etc., the same economic logic may be applied to the *labor* side of the production equation, meaning that *labor solidarity* can overcome the political incentive of the bosses to price-fix the cost of labor using divide-and-conquer-type strategies (racism, sexism, violence, etc.). Politically the fault line is labor-vs.-capital, even if capital uses its own *nationalist*-type *branding* (political marketing), over its various nation-state geographical entities.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
If a political ideology can be said to be based on *faith*, then why is there so much real-world *reasoning* surrounding it? I've been around revolutionary politics for over 30 years and I've *never* seen any religious precept given as the basis for Marxism, working-class power, proletarian revolution, etc.



Verv wrote:
There is lots of real world reasoning involved in religion as well. There are entire Islamic courts of jurisprudence that discuss things like the illegal downloading of MP3s. The thing is, their value system is just based on a different set of givens.

Marxism will have its own set of assumptions on what is really happening, and what each person merits.



So you're now backing away from your prior contention that Marxism / politics can be seen to be based on 'faith' -- you're *distinguishing* between Islamic (religious) courts, and Marxist 'assumptions' (scientific observations) about 'what is really happening'.

My point stands that Marxism does *not* use any religious precepts in its descriptions of the world.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
So what are these claimed 'assumptions', then? (I'm on the edge of my chair.) (grin)



Verv wrote:
Historical materialism, or the theory of alienation, the ideas surrounding the polarization of the classes or that class itself is produced from conflict are all examples of theories that involve faith, and this brings us to really basic ideas taken on faith...

That all men across the world have the same interests if they are the same class; that there really should only be a single class of men, that we can and should progress towards a pretty Utopian state of being.

It can even be said that materialism itself is taken on faith.



All you're doing here is continuing with your *accusations*, and contentions, without *corroborating* these contentions at all -- given that workers are dispossessed, exploited, and oppressed, it follows that workers have an objective / empirical interest in *solidarizing* among themselves to present a political bloc against the interests and divide-and-conquer tactics of the bosses. Workers strategies include withholding labor (strikes), forming their own 'workers state' to challenge the existing bourgeois ones, seizing the means of industrial mass production, etc.


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Verv wrote:
I do not have a strong opinion on this. I am, of course, not a Communist, but I do not feel particularly passionate about protecting mass accumulation of wealth and capital. That does not strike me as a completely inalienable right.



ckaihatsu wrote:
Okay, that's good, and encouraging. Maybe you could also edge away from your affinity to *nationalism* as well, especially since all politicians are themselves wealthy, and govern in the interests of the bourgeois / propertied *ruling class*.



Verv wrote:
Except when they are Communist, right? Then they rule for the Communist party.



Well, I'm not for nation-state formulations as an end-goal, *whatsoever*. You're actually thinking of *Stalinism* here, which is what *Stalin* advocated-for, and implemented. My politics are for workers-of-the-world socialism, which Stalin (and others) did *not* encourage or support.


Political Spectrum, Simplified

Spoiler: show
Image



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ckaihatsu wrote:
I'll suggest that what you're distinguishing here is *empiricism* (mundane information about the world), versus *science* (verified knowledge, like that of the class divide), versus 'cognitivism', meaning one's own understanding of what knowledge / science to *select*, and use in one's life.



Verv wrote:
As scientific truth is going to only be based on the mundane, empirical knowledge that is gleaned, I think it is not a necessary distinction.

I am a big fan of Wittgenstein's observation that we just cannot know anything of actual meaning for sure, and all that is certain is mundane.



Well, that sounds very anti-scientific, since if one person uses a telescope and observes certain cosmic phenomena, and another does the same and observes the same cosmic phenomena, then that's *knowledge*, based on science, which would be very difficult to *dispute*, yet that's your mindset here.


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Verv wrote:
That is a great question…

So, I think it is the enlightenment position that the government is simply there to mediate our “rights” (whatever those are), and solve disputes in the marketplace

I think a more original view of government is that the monarch is a sort of vox dei or willed ruler on Earth. Even when he is wrong or a tyrant, he is a representative of the great order that exists beyond nature. That is not to say that tyrants should not be toppled, for there is no good argument to make based on Biblical principles on that, and you can even see this discussion occurring among Confucianists at some points.



ckaihatsu wrote:
Well, with this position, though, you're effectively *tolerating* a standard of top-down elitist rule, for the most part.

I'll counterpose the legacy of the Enlightenment and bourgeois-democratic rule, which have demonstrated that the populace can *at least* mass-determine *who* their leadership should be, as in the bourgeois revolutions (England, America, France), which *overthrew* monarchical top-down rule.



Verv wrote:
These are oligarchs concentrating all power into the hands of a single class of men -- the merchants. Prior to this, there really was something more akin to a separation of the powers through the various estates that existed in European society, and now there really is just rule by the burghars.



You're referring to *feudalism* here, and there most certainly was *not* a 'separation of powers' during feudalism -- lords and nobles simply *dictated* to the serfs / slaves, as to what was to be produced on their estates. The ruling class' interests / concerns, then as now, were about the *continuation* of their system of exploitation and oppression, and not with the health and welfare of the laborers as people.

It was the *bourgeois revolutions* (of the merchants) that established the concept of 'citizenship' within the larger nation-state (as those began to be formed) as their mercantile wealth grew to rival that of the monarchs and aristocracies. Cities and handicrafts there were growing, too, to provide production / finished goods for the merchants, for trade. Yes, today we still have the class division, but it's no longer *feudal* class relations -- the ruling class is now the *financial descendants* of the 'burghars' -- the bourgeoisie.


Verv wrote:
You have a lot of faith if you think that liberal democracies truly reflect the will of the people.

I would say that the will of the people itself is an illusion.



I *never* said that I supported, or advocate-for, so-called 'liberal democracies'. These are fundamentally *nationalist*, and I advocate for workers-of-the-world *socialism*, meaning the proletarian control of all social production (factories / workplaces).

Mass political sentiment exists just as much as the planets in the solar system do -- whether you want to *recognize* 'the will of the people', or not, is your own business, but such has been called 'the second superpower' in the last decade since that mass antiwar political sentiment was instrumental in ending the war on Iraq.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
China's history features fierce anti-colonial movements as well, which repelled British, French, U.S., and Japanese imperialism -- the May Fourth Movement in particular:



Verv wrote:
And China also basically extracted massive tributes from countries like Korea, conquered its neighbors, etc. This is not so glorious to me -- it's one classical hierarchy resisting another classical hierarchy. Of course, there is something inherently romantic about the people resisting outside, foreign invasion, but it becomes a lot less interesting when you think of it more like the British & the French fighting and a lot less like evil white people trying to enslave brown people.



You're thinking of *Japanese* imperialism:



The Republic of China was one of the participants of the Cairo Conference [in 1943], which resulted in the Cairo Declaration. One of the main purposes of the Cairo Declaration was to create an independent Korea, free from Japanese Colonial Rule and restoration of Formosa and Manchuria to China.[citation needed]



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_o ... _relations



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ckaihatsu wrote:
No, actually, monarchs were overthrown in the previously mentioned bourgeois revolutions, including also in Russia, and China.

Wouldn't you rather have *bottom-up* politics (democracy, proletarian control of industrial mass production), than *top-down* politics (monarchies, aristocracies)?



Verv wrote:
I believe it is the case that monarchy was based too much on the old economic forms, and when capitalists became far more moneyed, they were more competitive and able to overthrow them. It is also the case that different royalist regimes tried to cut deals with merchants, and these created their own sorts of disasters...

But, ultimately, the big weakness was that, while monarchy did tend towards more absolutism, it was still somewhat based on feudalism, which was dead, and it did not do a good job of replacing feudalism with other power sharing schemes.

I think it may even be the case that, living through the 2020 election, there will be an increase of people who are naturally skeptical of liberal democracy, and there is a greater case for pointing out its failures. There could be more people interested in a more dynamic power sharing scheme and having the certainty of a monarch who can stand back and monitor what democratic and constitutional processes exist properly.



So are you pro-*fascism*, then?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
The 'marketplace' is relatively more economically advanced and dynamic than anything a *monarch*, or royal court, could pull off. If you argue for monarchism you're arguing for a big backwards step economically, to *feudalism* and *slavery*.



Verv wrote:
Monarchy does not have to function on top of feudalism.



There's going to be that *friction* between the universal markets of capitalism, versus the circumscribed localist patchwork of various *nation-states*. In any financial dispute between two proposed monarchs, how would the dispute get settled? World War III?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
And who's 'we' here? You're for *monarchical* rule, but how would this miniature Bill of Rights be included exactly?



Verv wrote:
Just ask the British how they do it.

As it stands, all of these monarchical societies had different groups with invested rights that the King could not freely circumvent. This was the tragedy of Hungary -- the local lords had too much power, and the King couldn't do much. The Kings of England, Spain, and France were constantly fighting with their nobles, the clergy, and the burghars for taxation and money...

And, while tyranny did exist, even individual citizens had recognized rights that the King or no other person could violate. Tyranny existed because the usual circumstances which create despotism existed, but when things were working smoothly, there were invested rights that the King could not even violate.



Like what, exactly -- remember, I place *zero* value in your say-so alone.

Would you be *pro-parliament* at all, over *monarchical* power?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_Rights_1689


Verv wrote:
The l'etat c'est moi! attitude is something that developed later. Prior to this, Kings thought of themselves as Christ's vicar on earth, and would try to uphold their religious obligations, and rule for the benefit of their people, often thinking this is the only way for them to get to heaven (and this is right).

This is not even exclusive to the Christian west. This sort of high idealism was present everywhere.

I think we should appraise monarchy by how it can work, and how it is likely to work in a developed society, and not by how it works in the lowest form.

If you are a Communist, I would imagine you would be sympathetic to that in light of Communism's track record.



No, you're confusing workers-of-the-world, Communist-Manifesto, small-c 'communism', with Stalin's *Stalinism* (politically marketed as large-C 'Communism').

My politics don't require any *figurehead*, or *strongman* -- it needs to be the world's *workers* who control all social production *collectively*.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
You're making it sound, just on your say-so, that a more balkanized global patchwork of smaller nation-states would somehow be better than how the world is today -- but the feudal monarchical states of *Europe* had *plenty* of warfare from the 14th century onwards.



Verv wrote:
The factors that caused these wars are no longer relevant.



Like what factors?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
I'm certainly not going to defend modern nationalist imperialism, as evidenced in the two world wars of the 20th century, but I *am* going to point out that the nation-state composition of (relative) social order is *anachronistic*, and has been, since the fall of feudalism / slavery, and particularly with the productive prowess of *industrialization* / mass-production. That's why 'governance' so-to-speak, should be with the *workers* who are the ones actually *producing* the stuff that we all need for our modern lives and living.



Verv wrote:
The nation-state, or even the empire, does not necessarily cause war, or impact the people who live in them negatively.

I just do not even really see an alternative.



You seem to be unaware of *imperialism*:



In order for capitalism to generate greater profits than the home market can yield, the merging of banks and industrial cartels produces finance capitalism and the exportation and investment of capital to countries with underdeveloped economies is required. In turn, such financial behaviour leads to the division of the world among monopolist business companies and the great powers. Moreover, in the course of colonizing undeveloped countries, business and government eventually will engage in geopolitical conflict over the economic exploitation of large portions of the geographic world and its populaces. Therefore, imperialism is the highest (advanced) stage of capitalism, requiring monopolies (of labour and natural-resource exploitation) and the exportation of finance capital (rather than goods) to sustain colonialism, which is an integral function of said economic model.[4][5] Furthermore, in the capitalist homeland, the super-profits yielded by the colonial exploitation of a people and their economy permit businessmen to bribe native politicians, labour leaders and the labour aristocracy (upper stratum of the working class) to politically thwart worker revolt (labour strike).



https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperiali ... Capitalism



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ckaihatsu wrote:
So would you at least *stand aside* while the workers of the world *settle scores* with those who have backed imperialism and political exceptionalism for the imperialist militarist use of organized violence around the world?



Verv wrote:
I think the people who, say, used the US military to invade Iraq or to fight in other circumstances are actually so few in number that there's no reason for them to not be given a trial.



Well, fortunately, that's not up to *me*.

Would you answer my question -- are you going to stand-aside when it's reckoning time for the bourgeoisie?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Can we simplify this and agree that those with capital are using that capital to make *profits* for themselves? I don't think that capitalists are out to *improve*, or *ruin*, any people, or part of the globe, but what *results*, in fact, *is* the ruination of many people in many countries due to the capitalist *profit-making* economic motivation on the part of those with sizeable ownership of capital.



Verv wrote:
I think that getting wealthy is the primary motive. Just as such, I think a great deal many doctors are primarily motivated by the paycheck and nice life that being a doctor affords...

But this does not change the fact that many of them also want to make a good product, improve people's lives, and feel like they left the world a better place, just like all of us want to.



Yeah, at the individual level, I can agree with this -- but addressing things at the *individual* level is pointless, as you acknowledge, regarding the *overall* capitalist dynamic of the accumulation of wealth.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Do you have anything to say about the Korean War, or the Vietnam War? (Or the Spanish-American War, or the British Raj?)



Verv wrote:
The Korean war was caused largely by the Soviet Union not wanting to allow a democratic union of Korea.

I think the other wars would require more specialized knowledge than what I have and I am not about to start getting into a Wikipedia-driven online argument about them. ^^



You're describing Korea in the context of the postwar Cold War.

You really have *no position* on the Vietnam War? Was it worth it? Not worth it? Justified? Not?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Do you have any comment on offshore *tax havens* or corporate *money laundering*?



Verv wrote:
This is, of course, very wrong, and amounts to stealing from the people.



How can this problem be overcome so that it doesn't continue?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
*Or*, with popular mass involvement, as through journalism, *everyone* could keep tabs on what the private sector, and government, are doing, so as to have a more bottom-up political process, and so to not be dependent on a likely *bottlenecked* royal court for the same.



Verv wrote:
I think that the issue here is that you think of a monarchy in very cartoonish terms, and not as something that can function very similar to what is going on in the UK right now, just with a lot more power in the monarch as the executive and also as a competent legislator.



What about parliament?
#15137783
ckaihatsu wrote: I'll agree that the overall trend during the Trump Administration has been towards *localization* / balkanization / isolationism, but the world's already been globalized, so a globalized capitalist economy of some kind is going to outlive Trump's counter-globalization-tending term in office.


That is correct – I think it would only change by shift more massive than any single world leader could produce.

ckaihatsu wrote: That said empirically, though, I'll reiterate / explain that geography alone is no basis for determining a personal or 'entity' interests, even though it feels intuitive and natural to think in terms of localist geography. This is because of *class* -- not everyone in a geographical entity ('nation', etc.) has the same material interests -- some are owners, some are laborers.
Socialists point to the mismatch, and *tension*, between the empirical reality of a 'universal'-type capitalist economy everywhere, and the *patchwork* landscape of separate governments / nation-states that *administrate* over the economy in various places.

It is very useful to talk about the mismatch and tension between a near universal capitalist economy and the patchwork landscape of separate governments. It is also useful to think of culture being rapidly erased and replaced with a global consumer economy, where the people of traditionally very different cultures end up becoming united superficially through consumption of the same products.
The end goal of the globalist Capitalist is to have the same consumer set in India, China, America, Brazil, Nigeria, etc., so that their single product can sell universally. It could even be said that this is the case for Messi and Ronaldo jerseys or Starbucks coffee, but the real goal is for this to be the same for every single product conceivable.
Pop music, Netflix, etc., are all invested in getting people to get on board with the same attitudes and lifestyle patterns. They want 14 year old girls in Afghanistan, Morocco, Korea, and Botswana liking the same pop idols, and partaking in the same fashion trends. Ideally, they would even read the same blogs, interact in the same hashtags on Twitter.
It’s this way, too, for more obscure things, like chess or metal music, and both of these nitch industries benefit off of the success of the global Capitalist system.
Thanks for this great comment – of course, I am going to shift it into terms that are more useful to me as a traditionalist, but this is really one of the areas that we can help each other…
Where we would disagree is in terms of workers and class struggle.
I do not think it is wrong at all to fight for more power and rights to the working class, I merely think that the interests and end goals of each group are different in their details, and the end goal is not some global Socialist order that spans countries, but merely countries returning to live out their own destinies and be the best versions of themselves that they can be.
ckaihatsu wrote: Historically the industrial jobs went to *China* because the labor costs there were even less than the cost of labor in Mexico. Nonetheless, since capitalist economics itself encourages beating-the-market kinds of economic behavior, through cartels, combinations, oligopolies, price-fixing, etc., the same economic logic may be applied to the *labor* side of the production equation, meaning that *labor solidarity* can overcome the political incentive of the bosses to price-fix the cost of labor using divide-and-conquer-type strategies (racism, sexism, violence, etc.). Politically the fault line is labor-vs.-capital, even if capital uses its own *nationalist*-type *branding* (political marketing), over its various nation-state geographical entities.

I am definitely open to the idea that labor groups can, internationally, work together to achieve some good results, and I encourage them to do so. But I think it can actually change better, faster through simply changing national policies, and this can be done through electing not just leftists, but also right wingers who put nation above private corporate profits.

ckaihatsu wrote: So you're now backing away from your prior contention that Marxism / politics can be seen to be based on 'faith' -- you're *distinguishing* between Islamic (religious) courts, and Marxist 'assumptions' (scientific observations) about 'what is really happening'.
My point stands that Marxism does *not* use any religious precepts in its descriptions of the world.


They are based on faith – you can say it is based on observation, but it really is not. They are broad, sweeping conclusions about how labor is performed, or about how history moves, and often are even of a category where they cannot be proven, but are taken to be absolute truths.
How is that not faith?
Especially in an era when the problems of capitalism have largely resolved themselves. There is no call for a massive movement to abolish class in societies like Europe, and even the relatively poor in places like Brazil and India are too busy playing games on their smartphones to launch a revolution.
ckaihatsu wrote:All you're doing here is continuing with your *accusations*, and contentions, without *corroborating* these contentions at all -- given that workers are dispossessed, exploited, and oppressed, it follows that workers have an objective / empirical interest in *solidarizing* among themselves to present a political bloc against the interests and divide-and-conquer tactics of the bosses. Workers strategies include withholding labor (strikes), forming their own 'workers state' to challenge the existing bourgeois ones, seizing the means of industrial mass production, etc.


American teachers in Minnesota have intersts with other Minnesota teachers, though maybe not so much with those who are outside of their city (or town); they have some of the same interests that Wisconsin teachers have, at least more than they do with California teachers… But what interests do American and Mexican teachers have in common?
Now, apply this to truck drivers, tech industry workers, etc.
In spite of how very interconnected economies are, I do not really think it is plausible to say that in most cases most workers throughout the world have a common target and goal.
Oddly enough, much of the time when they do have a very common goal it is because they are so prosperous as to be able to compete for the same jobs in the international job market.

It is also important to understand that worker is not an immutable identity. The children of working class people and farmers advance in class consistently. Many workers and farmers do not want a world without class, but merely want a world where social advancement is possible.

Do you think the average German butcher or French carpenter feels that there needs to be a Communist revolution to prevent his child from being stuck at the bottom of society? Of course not.
While some societies do require significant changes, these are changes that ought to produce higher living standards for the poorest, and provide opportunities for advancement. Not a total destruction of the economy as we know it and a replacement of a worker’s state.

ckaihatsu wrote: Well, I'm not for nation-state formulations as an end-goal, *whatsoever*. You're actually thinking of *Stalinism* here, which is what *Stalin* advocated-for, and implemented. My politics are for workers-of-the-world socialism, which Stalin (and others) did *not* encourage or support.

I would have thought that Stalin would have viewed the nation-state as a temporary benchmark in the journey to that end goal, which is how I imagine most Communists view it in theory. I think you guys will always get stuck on the first stage (or two or three, however you cut the cake) of the revolution because there is absolutely no ascendancy into Communism.
And, just in case you are about to do a Star Trek socialism argument, it doesn’t count as a Socialist economy if you have far more collectivized wealth in a post-scarcity economy. I will probably be dead by then, but if any sociological archeologist mining 21st century English language databases comes across my post, socialism did not win even if Capitalism ceased to exist as we understand it due to technology. These guys only began predicting this after Communism totally failed in the 20th century – it’s moving the goal posts x 1,000.

ckaihatsu wrote: Well, that sounds very anti-scientific, since if one person uses a telescope and observes certain cosmic phenomena, and another does the same and observes the same cosmic phenomena, then that's *knowledge*, based on science, which would be very difficult to *dispute*, yet that's your mindset here.

These are just truths about the observable world – something that is presumably not that captivating to most people, who spend their lives searching not for descriptions of physical processes, but looking for meaning and love.
ckaihatsu wrote: You're referring to *feudalism* here, and there most certainly was *not* a 'separation of powers' during feudalism -- lords and nobles simply *dictated* to the serfs / slaves, as to what was to be produced on their estates. The ruling class' interests / concerns, then as now, were about the *continuation* of their system of exploitation and oppression, and not with the health and welfare of the laborers as people.

It was the *bourgeois revolutions* (of the merchants) that established the concept of 'citizenship' within the larger nation-state (as those began to be formed) as their mercantile wealth grew to rival that of the monarchs and aristocracies. Cities and handicrafts there were growing, too, to provide production / finished goods for the merchants, for trade. Yes, today we still have the class division, but it's no longer *feudal* class relations -- the ruling class is now the *financial descendants* of the 'burghars' -- the bourgeoisie.

The limitations on serfs and slaves were necessities of the economy – I am sure a Marxist would agree with that.
Regardless, it was a greater separation of power because of the multiplicity of estates.

There’s little conflict here.

ckaihatsu wrote: I *never* said that I supported, or advocate-for, so-called 'liberal democracies'. These are fundamentally *nationalist*, and I advocate for workers-of-the-world *socialism*, meaning the proletarian control of all social production (factories / workplaces).
Mass political sentiment exists just as much as the planets in the solar system do -- whether you want to *recognize* 'the will of the people', or not, is your own business, but such has been called 'the second superpower' in the last decade since that mass antiwar political sentiment was instrumental in ending the war on Iraq.

The war in Iraq ended only after the victory had already been secured – the war movement’s “success” was getting Pres. Obama years into his own Presidency to agree to withdraw. The victory is only in the fact that the withdrawal timeline ws too soon. Now, Iraq has total chaos, the West has their oil, instead of them having a safer society (and, of course, the West still having their oil).
ckaihatsu wrote: You're thinking of *Japanese* imperialism:

Korea was a tributary to China throughout much of its history.
The Manchu-led Qing dynasty invaded the Joseon dynasty of Korea and forced it to become a tributary in 1636, due to Joseon's continued support and loyalty to the Ming dynasty. However, the Manchus, whose ancestors had been subordinate to Korean kingdoms,[17] were viewed as barbarians by the Korean court, which, regarding itself as the new "Confucian ideological center" in place of the Ming, continued to use the Ming calendar in defiance of the Qing, despite sending tribute missions.[18] Meanwhile, Japan avoided direct contact with Qing China and instead manipulated embassies from neighboring Joseon and Ryukyu to make it falsely appear as though they came to pay tribute.[19] Joseon Korea remained a tributary of Qing China until 1895, when the First Sino-Japanese War ended this relationship.

Tributary system of China
Fun thing: the key battle that resulted in the Joseun dynasty surrendering to the China (which was actually in 1637) took place a 45 minute walk from my home. The fortress still exists there – it had just been a nice summer palace for the King to go hunting in or to stay at when traveling, and quite a defensible position, but it ultimately could not save them from being re-absorbed entirely as a vassal state.
ckaihatsu wrote: So are you pro-*fascism*, then?

No, I think that this level of reactionary stuff is actually a mistake.
The “third position” was still fundamentally modernist – it was just an alternative modernity, as Dugin called it.
Modernist political systems are not what we should base our future political reforms on.

ckaihatsu wrote: There's going to be that *friction* between the universal markets of capitalism, versus the circumscribed localist patchwork of various *nation-states*. In any financial dispute between two proposed monarchs, how would the dispute get settled? World War III?

Why do trade disputes necessarily escalate to war? I suppose if the conditions are extreme enough, they would.
Tariffs and the risk of overseas investments evaporating or being nationalized are all just part of the calculated risks that businesses do now, and I guess they would just be moreso a part of the economic landscape.
ckaihatsu wrote: Like what, exactly -- remember, I place *zero* value in your say-so alone.

Would you be *pro-parliament* at all, over *monarchical* power?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_Rights_1689

Sure, but I write enough here. This is my hobby.
I do not feel some urgency to direct quote dozens of instances of the checks and balances on the King that existed at specific points of history because you ask me to.
Check out Imperial Spain by J. H. Elliot – here are some quotes from it to help provide some very basic information as to what the power structure was like in Spain as the feudal age was really drawing to its end and being replaced by the more recent incarnations of monarchical systems:
“"Although it was already a recognized custom from the middle of the thirteenth century that the King of Castile must appeal to the Cortes whenever he wanted an additional subsidy or servicio, the strength that might have accrued to the Cortes through this practice was diminished by the Crown's ability to find alternative means of supply. It was diminished also by the fiscal exemption of nobles and clergy, whose consequent lack of interest in financial proceedings compelled the representatives of the towns to fight their battles with the Crown single-handed. Even more important, the Castilian Cortes, unlike those of the Crown of Aragon, failed to obtain a share in the legislating power. Theoretically, the Cortes's consent had to be obtained for the revocation of laws, but the power to make new laws lay with the Crown. The Cortes were allowed to draw up petitions, but they never succeeded in turning this into a right of legislation, partly because of their own lack of unity, and partly because of their failure to establish the principle that redress of grievances must precede supply." [29]
"These sources of income were entirely independent of Cortes control, and their rising yield enabled the Crown to dispense entirely with the Cortes for a long period during the middle of the reign. Between the death of Henry IV in 1474 and that of Ferdinand in 1516 the Cortes of Castile were summoned sixteen times, and of these sessions four occurred before 1483 and the other twelve after 1497. The new recourse to the Cortes from the late 1490s is to be explained primarily by the
heavy new financial demands made by the war of Granada and the Italian campaigns." [66]

"Closer supervision of the municipalities was an essential prerequisite both for control of the Cortes and for a more effective assertion of royal supremacy over Castile as a whole; for the walled cities and towns which dotted the Castilian landscape had many of the characteristics of city states and enjoyed a high degree of independence of the Crown. Established one after another during the southward march of the Reconquista, they had been given their own fueros or charters of liberties by generous kings, and had been liberally endowed with vast areas of communal land, which extended their jurisdiction far into the surrounding countryside and served to meet the bulk of their expenses. Their charters gave them the right to form a general assembly or concejo, which was ordinarily composed of the heads of families (vecinos), and which chose each year the various municipal officials. The judicial officials, enjoying civil and criminal jurisdiction, were known as alcaldes, while the principal administrative officials were the regidores, who numbered anything from eight to thirty-six, and formed the effective municipal government. Beneath the regidores were many officials concerned with the day-to-day administration in the town – the alguacil, or principal police officer, the escribano, who kept the municipal registers, and the minor functionaries known as fieles, entrusted with such duties as inspecting weights and measures and superintending the municipal lands." [67]

"During the fourteenth century the vigorous democratic tradition which had characterized Castilian municipal life during the preceding two hundred years began to disappear. As the task of municipal government became more complex, and the monarchy became increasingly jealous of the powers of the municipalities, the concejo was undermined from within, while simultaneously coming under attack from without. During the reign of Alfonso XI (1312–50), the concejo everywhere lost much of its power to the regidores, who were appointed by the Crown instead of being elected by the householders." [67]

"The collapse of the Crown in fifteenth-century Castile inevitably checked these endeavours to bring the municipalities under effective royal control. In order to help fill its empty treasury, the monarchy under John II began to create and sell municipal offices, in direct contravention of the town charters, which carefully stipulated how many officials there should be. The growth of venality, and the decline of royal control, left the field open for local magnates and competing factions to extend their influence over the organs of municipal government, so that towns were either bitterly divided by civil feuds, or fell into the hands of small, self-perpetuating oligarchies." [67]

This is, of course, just a small amount of the information that exists on the Spanish monarchical structure and what was going on – and even in these quotes, there are not flattering things, like the violation of town charters and the disappearance of very democratic processes that honestly were good checks on power and positive reflections on the amount of rights enjoyed by various subjects in the greater Spanish area.
But it also shows something very important: laws were in place, which did provide checks on power. At points during the thousand plus years of Spanish monarchy, when times were far more desperate than they are now, there were abuses of power, just like there are in democratic societies, and certainly as there always are in Communist ones.
ckaihatsu wrote:My politics don't require any *figurehead*, or *strongman* -- it needs to be the world's *workers* who control all social production *collectively*.

Then I think your system will never get off the ground because there is no such unity of workers that is asking for what you are promising.
ckaihatsu wrote: Like what factors?

War then was driven by uncertainty and the need to proactively fight just to survive.
ckaihatsu wrote: You seem to be unaware of *imperialism*:

Which still exists, but in a friendlier form, because the world is more certain, and the pax America is so complete.
And my words were that it does not necessarily impact people negatively, not that it never does.

ckaihatsu wrote:
Would you answer my question -- are you going to stand-aside when it's reckoning time for the bourgeoisie?

I will not fight a class war in any Communist sense of the word.
ckaihatsu wrote: You're describing Korea in the context of the postwar Cold War.

You really have *no position* on the Vietnam War? Was it worth it? Not worth it? Justified? Not?

Well, sure. The Korean War took place in the context of the cold war, but do we really need to add more to our argument?
If it’s OK for the USSR to oppose democratic union between the Koreas in 1950, why is it so bad for the US to fight its own war for realpolitik reasons in Vietnam?
ckaihatsu wrote: How can this problem be overcome so that it doesn't continue?


No oligarchs running the society.

ckaihatsu wrote: What about parliament?


Yes, the authorities should strive to be good to their subjects, and this would involve degrees of representation that are not found solely in the monarch.
#15138332
ckaihatsu wrote:
I'll agree that the overall trend during the Trump Administration has been towards *localization* / balkanization / isolationism, but the world's already been globalized, so a globalized capitalist economy of some kind is going to outlive Trump's counter-globalization-tending term in office.



Verv wrote:
That is correct – I think it would only change by shift more massive than any single world leader could produce.



What kind of 'shift' do you have in mind here? RCEP?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
That said empirically, though, I'll reiterate / explain that geography alone is no basis for determining a personal or 'entity' interests, even though it feels intuitive and natural to think in terms of localist geography. This is because of *class* -- not everyone in a geographical entity ('nation', etc.) has the same material interests -- some are owners, some are laborers.

Socialists point to the mismatch, and *tension*, between the empirical reality of a 'universal'-type capitalist economy everywhere, and the *patchwork* landscape of separate governments / nation-states that *administrate* over the economy in various places.



Verv wrote:
It is very useful to talk about the mismatch and tension between a near universal capitalist economy and the patchwork landscape of separate governments. It is also useful to think of culture being rapidly erased and replaced with a global consumer economy, where the people of traditionally very different cultures end up becoming united superficially through consumption of the same products.



I'm going to have to *disagree* with your anti-consumer-empowering line here since many consumer items are modern-day *tools* for people, to the extent that they can afford them, and people all over the world should certainly have *access* to whatever they need for their lives.

Sure, there's a resulting emergent 'consumer culture', of keeping up with the latest tech increment, or of conspicuous consumption, but there's also *hobbyist* culture, which *isn't* ostentatious, and unites internationally on the basis of materials without being superficial.


Verv wrote:
The end goal of the globalist Capitalist is to have the same consumer set in India, China, America, Brazil, Nigeria, etc., so that their single product can sell universally. It could even be said that this is the case for Messi and Ronaldo jerseys or Starbucks coffee, but the real goal is for this to be the same for every single product conceivable.

Pop music, Netflix, etc., are all invested in getting people to get on board with the same attitudes and lifestyle patterns. They want 14 year old girls in Afghanistan, Morocco, Korea, and Botswana liking the same pop idols, and partaking in the same fashion trends. Ideally, they would even read the same blogs, interact in the same hashtags on Twitter.

It’s this way, too, for more obscure things, like chess or metal music, and both of these nitch industries benefit off of the success of the global Capitalist system.

Thanks for this great comment – of course, I am going to shift it into terms that are more useful to me as a traditionalist, but this is really one of the areas that we can help each other…

Where we would disagree is in terms of workers and class struggle.

I do not think it is wrong at all to fight for more power and rights to the working class, I merely think that the interests and end goals of each group are different in their details, and the end goal is not some global Socialist order that spans countries, but merely countries returning to live out their own destinies and be the best versions of themselves that they can be.



I have to make the distinction between *material* and *cultural* here, because I'm all-for regular everyday people *empowering* themselves as they best see fit, which, for *workers*, *is* a global socialist workers state that could usurp bourgeois rule, and perhaps for the reason you're describing -- the corporate commercial mono-culture that's inevitable whenever profit-making is the rule of the day.

Workers are certainly more knowledgeable about their own particular, localized working conditions, but would benefit *collectively* by being able to communicate and conference internationally within each given industry, to the point of international solidarity and running their workplaces for *themselves* instead of for the corporate machine and its monoculture.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Historically the industrial jobs went to *China* because the labor costs there were even less than the cost of labor in Mexico. Nonetheless, since capitalist economics itself encourages beating-the-market kinds of economic behavior, through cartels, combinations, oligopolies, price-fixing, etc., the same economic logic may be applied to the *labor* side of the production equation, meaning that *labor solidarity* can overcome the political incentive of the bosses to price-fix the cost of labor using divide-and-conquer-type strategies (racism, sexism, violence, etc.). Politically the fault line is labor-vs.-capital, even if capital uses its own *nationalist*-type *branding* (political marketing), over its various nation-state geographical entities.



Verv wrote:
I am definitely open to the idea that labor groups can, internationally, work together to achieve some good results, and I encourage them to do so. But I think it can actually change better, faster through simply changing national policies, and this can be done through electing not just leftists, but also right wingers who put nation above private corporate profits.



I think you're overlooking that the nation-state is an organization *for* private corporate profits, and that's why corporate policies prevail *today*, because corporations have the backing of the U.S., etc.

Can you give any examples of anti-corporate right-wingers, and any anti-corporate right-wing *campaigns*?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
So you're now backing away from your prior contention that Marxism / politics can be seen to be based on 'faith' -- you're *distinguishing* between Islamic (religious) courts, and Marxist 'assumptions' (scientific observations) about 'what is really happening'.

My point stands that Marxism does *not* use any religious precepts in its descriptions of the world.



Verv wrote:
They are based on faith – you can say it is based on observation, but it really is not. They are broad, sweeping conclusions about how labor is performed, or about how history moves, and often are even of a category where they cannot be proven, but are taken to be absolute truths.



Okay, like *what*, for example?


Verv wrote:
How is that not faith?

Especially in an era when the problems of capitalism have largely resolved themselves. There is no call for a massive movement to abolish class in societies like Europe, and even the relatively poor in places like Brazil and India are too busy playing games on their smartphones to launch a revolution.



Here's one organization that keeps up with news of such labor developments internationally:


https://www.labourstart.org/news/countr ... angcode=xx

https://www.labourstart.org/news/countr ... angcode=en

https://www.labourstart.org/news/countr ... src=india/


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ckaihatsu wrote:
All you're doing here is continuing with your *accusations*, and contentions, without *corroborating* these contentions at all -- given that workers are dispossessed, exploited, and oppressed, it follows that workers have an objective / empirical interest in *solidarizing* among themselves to present a political bloc against the interests and divide-and-conquer tactics of the bosses. Workers strategies include withholding labor (strikes), forming their own 'workers state' to challenge the existing bourgeois ones, seizing the means of industrial mass production, etc.



Verv wrote:
American teachers in Minnesota have intersts with other Minnesota teachers, though maybe not so much with those who are outside of their city (or town); they have some of the same interests that Wisconsin teachers have, at least more than they do with California teachers… But what interests do American and Mexican teachers have in common?

Now, apply this to truck drivers, tech industry workers, etc.

In spite of how very interconnected economies are, I do not really think it is plausible to say that in most cases most workers throughout the world have a common target and goal.

Oddly enough, much of the time when they do have a very common goal it is because they are so prosperous as to be able to compete for the same jobs in the international job market.



The answer is: Working conditions. Whatever the geographic location the *nature* of the job -- say, teaching, trucking, tech infrastructure, or whatever -- will be *very* similar, if not the same, no matter *where* it is, because the *tasks* of that work role are the same. I don't know why you consider *geography* to be such an important factor.


Verv wrote:
It is also important to understand that worker is not an immutable identity. The children of working class people and farmers advance in class consistently. Many workers and farmers do not want a world without class, but merely want a world where social advancement is possible.



How do you define 'social advancement', exactly -- ?


Verv wrote:
Do you think the average German butcher or French carpenter feels that there needs to be a Communist revolution to prevent his child from being stuck at the bottom of society? Of course not.



Working class power isn't just about *social status* -- it's also *economic*, meaning that worldwide income inequality could be *eliminated* *instantly* if workers could be paid the surplus labor value that's inherently given to the bosses in the form of profit. I outlined a proposal at another thread that calls for *all* equity capital to be professionally managed, as a regular corporate-bureaucracy white-collar salaried position, so that capital owners do *not* have to receive profits, and so that surplus labor value from wage-work can go directly to the wage workers themselves. This wouldn't require a proletarian revolution, and it would be a reform that I could support.


Verv wrote:
While some societies do require significant changes, these are changes that ought to produce higher living standards for the poorest, and provide opportunities for advancement. Not a total destruction of the economy as we know it and a replacement of a worker’s state.



Okay, what do you think about the reform I just described?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Well, I'm not for nation-state formulations as an end-goal, *whatsoever*. You're actually thinking of *Stalinism* here, which is what *Stalin* advocated-for, and implemented. My politics are for workers-of-the-world socialism, which Stalin (and others) did *not* encourage or support.



Verv wrote:
I would have thought that Stalin would have viewed the nation-state as a temporary benchmark in the journey to that end goal, which is how I imagine most Communists view it in theory.



No, there was a distinct historical *split*:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left_Opposition


Verv wrote:
I think you guys will always get stuck on the first stage (or two or three, however you cut the cake) of the revolution because there is absolutely no ascendancy into Communism.

And, just in case you are about to do a Star Trek socialism argument, it doesn’t count as a Socialist economy if you have far more collectivized wealth in a post-scarcity economy. I will probably be dead by then, but if any sociological archeologist mining 21st century English language databases comes across my post, socialism did not win even if Capitalism ceased to exist as we understand it due to technology. These guys only began predicting this after Communism totally failed in the 20th century – it’s moving the goal posts x 1,000.



'Post-scarcity' is really the key point here -- capitalism, unfortunately, values *scarcity* more highly so that in times and areas of *privation* prices go *up* (war-torn areas, rural environments, underdeveloped countries) -- once mass-production is established capitalism tends towards *overproduction*, and the *glut* of goods and services causes *deflation*, meaning prices go *down*, but then so does the circulation / supply of money itself, meaning that it's more difficult to *acquire* the money, though that money is more powerful, versus lower prices, once procured.

The 'socialist economy' is really just a *transitional period*, for the repression and overthrow of the bourgeois ruling class -- it's *not* a permanent condition because the *goal* is *communism* -- today, 'fully-automated-luxury-communism', which is now possible due to AI automation over many / all industrial mass-production processes, enabling the potential for *everyone* to benefit *equally* from technology / mass-production, without even having to labor *at all*.


[10] Supply prioritization in a socialist transitional economy

Spoiler: show
Image



[7] Syndicalism-Socialism-Communism Transition Diagram

Spoiler: show
Image



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ckaihatsu wrote:
Well, that sounds very anti-scientific, since if one person uses a telescope and observes certain cosmic phenomena, and another does the same and observes the same cosmic phenomena, then that's *knowledge*, based on science, which would be very difficult to *dispute*, yet that's your mindset here.



Verv wrote:
These are just truths about the observable world – something that is presumably not that captivating to most people, who spend their lives searching not for descriptions of physical processes, but looking for meaning and love.



Oh, I don't think that (revolutionary) politics addresses the *personal*, *experiential* side of things -- that's up to the *individual*, given that they have the free-time for such, or for anything else of their choosing. Politics can address the *material condition* of humanity, *in common*.


‭History, Macro-Micro -- politics-logistics-lifestyle

Spoiler: show
Image



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ckaihatsu wrote:
You're referring to *feudalism* here, and there most certainly was *not* a 'separation of powers' during feudalism -- lords and nobles simply *dictated* to the serfs / slaves, as to what was to be produced on their estates. The ruling class' interests / concerns, then as now, were about the *continuation* of their system of exploitation and oppression, and not with the health and welfare of the laborers as people.

It was the *bourgeois revolutions* (of the merchants) that established the concept of 'citizenship' within the larger nation-state (as those began to be formed) as their mercantile wealth grew to rival that of the monarchs and aristocracies. Cities and handicrafts there were growing, too, to provide production / finished goods for the merchants, for trade. Yes, today we still have the class division, but it's no longer *feudal* class relations -- the ruling class is now the *financial descendants* of the 'burghars' -- the bourgeoisie.



Verv wrote:
The limitations on serfs and slaves were necessities of the economy – I am sure a Marxist would agree with that.

Regardless, it was a greater separation of power because of the multiplicity of estates.



No, sorry, but balkanized private interests, then or now, do not constitute a 'separation of powers' -- that term applies to *government*, meaning the legislative, judicial, and executive branches of government under bourgeois (merchants) class rule.

Anyone, like wage laborers / wage-slaves, or serfs, or chattel slaves of the past, would all be in the same boat as part of the *dispossessed* class in society, meaning that they did-not / do-not control the *means of mass production*, which, today, is *industrial mass production*.

One's relationship to the means of mass production is an *empirical*, verifiable 'social status'.


Verv wrote:
There’s little conflict here.



There were *plenty* of conflicts and wars among the nobility during medieval times, in Europe, China, Japan, and the rest of the world:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hundred_Years%27_War


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ckaihatsu wrote:
I *never* said that I supported, or advocate-for, so-called 'liberal democracies'. These are fundamentally *nationalist*, and I advocate for workers-of-the-world *socialism*, meaning the proletarian control of all social production (factories / workplaces).

Mass political sentiment exists just as much as the planets in the solar system do -- whether you want to *recognize* 'the will of the people', or not, is your own business, but such has been called 'the second superpower' in the last decade since that mass antiwar political sentiment was instrumental in ending the war on Iraq.



Verv wrote:
The war in Iraq ended only after the victory had already been secured – the war movement’s “success” was getting Pres. Obama years into his own Presidency to agree to withdraw. The victory is only in the fact that the withdrawal timeline ws too soon. Now, Iraq has total chaos, the West has their oil, instead of them having a safer society (and, of course, the West still having their oil).



If the U.S. was able to grab Iraq oil, then why are you making it sound like there was *any* "humanitarian" aspect to the invasion at all? Ditto for Libya.


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Verv wrote:
And China also basically extracted massive tributes from countries like Korea, conquered its neighbors, etc. This is not so glorious to me -- it's one classical hierarchy resisting another classical hierarchy. Of course, there is something inherently romantic about the people resisting outside, foreign invasion, but it becomes a lot less interesting when you think of it more like the British & the French fighting and a lot less like evil white people trying to enslave brown people.



ckaihatsu wrote:
You're thinking of *Japanese* imperialism:



Verv wrote:
Korea was a tributary to China throughout much of its history.

The Manchu-led Qing dynasty invaded the Joseon dynasty of Korea and forced it to become a tributary in 1636, due to Joseon's continued support and loyalty to the Ming dynasty. However, the Manchus, whose ancestors had been subordinate to Korean kingdoms,[17] were viewed as barbarians by the Korean court, which, regarding itself as the new "Confucian ideological center" in place of the Ming, continued to use the Ming calendar in defiance of the Qing, despite sending tribute missions.[18] Meanwhile, Japan avoided direct contact with Qing China and instead manipulated embassies from neighboring Joseon and Ryukyu to make it falsely appear as though they came to pay tribute.[19] Joseon Korea remained a tributary of Qing China until 1895, when the First Sino-Japanese War ended this relationship.



Verv wrote:
Tributary system of China

Fun thing: the key battle that resulted in the Joseun dynasty surrendering to the China (which was actually in 1637) took place a 45 minute walk from my home. The fortress still exists there – it had just been a nice summer palace for the King to go hunting in or to stay at when traveling, and quite a defensible position, but it ultimately could not save them from being re-absorbed entirely as a vassal state.



Interesting.


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Verv wrote:
I think it may even be the case that, living through the 2020 election, there will be an increase of people who are naturally skeptical of liberal democracy, and there is a greater case for pointing out its failures. There could be more people interested in a more dynamic power sharing scheme and having the certainty of a monarch who can stand back and monitor what democratic and constitutional processes exist properly.



ckaihatsu wrote:
So are you pro-*fascism*, then?



Verv wrote:
No, I think that this level of reactionary stuff is actually a mistake.

The “third position” was still fundamentally modernist – it was just an alternative modernity, as Dugin called it.

Modernist political systems are not what we should base our future political reforms on.



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ckaihatsu wrote:
There's going to be that *friction* between the universal markets of capitalism, versus the circumscribed localist patchwork of various *nation-states*. In any financial dispute between two proposed monarchs, how would the dispute get settled? World War III?



Verv wrote:
Why do trade disputes necessarily escalate to war? I suppose if the conditions are extreme enough, they would.

Tariffs and the risk of overseas investments evaporating or being nationalized are all just part of the calculated risks that businesses do now, and I guess they would just be moreso a part of the economic landscape.



You were just proposing some kind of *monarchical* rule, and I inquired about the potential for world trade war, which has happened *historically*, over market share. One country has militarily conquered an undeveloped colony and has been using its population for cheap / slave labor, while selling its own products there, undercutting the colony's own domestic production.

Why would it ever conceivably allow *any other* colonialist / imperialist country to shoulder its way into the same colony, to *compete* for that cheap / slave labor, and market share?

How would your 'monarchical' formulation change this economic dynamic at all -- ?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Like what, exactly -- remember, I place *zero* value in your say-so alone.

Would you be *pro-parliament* at all, over *monarchical* power?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_Rights_1689



Verv wrote:
Sure, but I write enough here. This is my hobby.

I do not feel some urgency to direct quote dozens of instances of the checks and balances on the King that existed at specific points of history because you ask me to.

Check out Imperial Spain by J. H. Elliot – here are some quotes from it to help provide some very basic information as to what the power structure was like in Spain as the feudal age was really drawing to its end and being replaced by the more recent incarnations of monarchical systems:

“"Although it was already a recognized custom from the middle of the thirteenth century that the King of Castile must appeal to the Cortes whenever he wanted an additional subsidy or servicio, the strength that might have accrued to the Cortes through this practice was diminished by the Crown's ability to find alternative means of supply. It was diminished also by the fiscal exemption of nobles and clergy, whose consequent lack of interest in financial proceedings compelled the representatives of the towns to fight their battles with the Crown single-handed. Even more important, the Castilian Cortes, unlike those of the Crown of Aragon, failed to obtain a share in the legislating power. Theoretically, the Cortes's consent had to be obtained for the revocation of laws, but the power to make new laws lay with the Crown. The Cortes were allowed to draw up petitions, but they never succeeded in turning this into a right of legislation, partly because of their own lack of unity, and partly because of their failure to establish the principle that redress of grievances must precede supply." [29]

"These sources of income were entirely independent of Cortes control, and their rising yield enabled the Crown to dispense entirely with the Cortes for a long period during the middle of the reign. Between the death of Henry IV in 1474 and that of Ferdinand in 1516 the Cortes of Castile were summoned sixteen times, and of these sessions four occurred before 1483 and the other twelve after 1497. The new recourse to the Cortes from the late 1490s is to be explained primarily by the

heavy new financial demands made by the war of Granada and the Italian campaigns." [66]



Verv wrote:
"Closer supervision of the municipalities was an essential prerequisite both for control of the Cortes and for a more effective assertion of royal supremacy over Castile as a whole; for the walled cities and towns which dotted the Castilian landscape had many of the characteristics of city states and enjoyed a high degree of independence of the Crown. Established one after another during the southward march of the Reconquista, they had been given their own fueros or charters of liberties by generous kings, and had been liberally endowed with vast areas of communal land, which extended their jurisdiction far into the surrounding countryside and served to meet the bulk of their expenses. Their charters gave them the right to form a general assembly or concejo, which was ordinarily composed of the heads of families (vecinos), and which chose each year the various municipal officials. The judicial officials, enjoying civil and criminal jurisdiction, were known as alcaldes, while the principal administrative officials were the regidores, who numbered anything from eight to thirty-six, and formed the effective municipal government. Beneath the regidores were many officials concerned with the day-to-day administration in the town – the alguacil, or principal police officer, the escribano, who kept the municipal registers, and the minor functionaries known as fieles, entrusted with such duties as inspecting weights and measures and superintending the municipal lands." [67]



Verv wrote:
"During the fourteenth century the vigorous democratic tradition which had characterized Castilian municipal life during the preceding two hundred years began to disappear. As the task of municipal government became more complex, and the monarchy became increasingly jealous of the powers of the municipalities, the concejo was undermined from within, while simultaneously coming under attack from without. During the reign of Alfonso XI (1312–50), the concejo everywhere lost much of its power to the regidores, who were appointed by the Crown instead of being elected by the householders." [67]



Verv wrote:
"The collapse of the Crown in fifteenth-century Castile inevitably checked these endeavours to bring the municipalities under effective royal control. In order to help fill its empty treasury, the monarchy under John II began to create and sell municipal offices, in direct contravention of the town charters, which carefully stipulated how many officials there should be. The growth of venality, and the decline of royal control, left the field open for local magnates and competing factions to extend their influence over the organs of municipal government, so that towns were either bitterly divided by civil feuds, or fell into the hands of small, self-perpetuating oligarchies." [67]



Verv wrote:
This is, of course, just a small amount of the information that exists on the Spanish monarchical structure and what was going on – and even in these quotes, there are not flattering things, like the violation of town charters and the disappearance of very democratic processes that honestly were good checks on power and positive reflections on the amount of rights enjoyed by various subjects in the greater Spanish area.

But it also shows something very important: laws were in place, which did provide checks on power. At points during the thousand plus years of Spanish monarchy, when times were far more desperate than they are now, there were abuses of power, just like there are in democratic societies, and certainly as there always are in Communist ones.



The historical accounts you provided pertain mostly to *executive* functions, and there's no mention of any *parliamentary* or *judicial* functioning, which figure into the *bourgeois* system of checks-and-balances, or checks on runaway executive power.

By 'Communist' you mean the political marketing term of historical *Stalinist* countries, like that of Stalin. I'm not a Stalinist, I'm a workers-of-the-world *socialist*.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
My politics don't require any *figurehead*, or *strongman* -- it needs to be the world's *workers* who control all social production *collectively*.



Verv wrote:
Then I think your system will never get off the ground because there is no such unity of workers that is asking for what you are promising.



You'd be surprised. You're obviously out-of-the-loop on such circles, but you may want to look into the LabourStart website that I mentioned above.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
You're making it sound, just on your say-so, that a more balkanized global patchwork of smaller nation-states would somehow be better than how the world is today -- but the feudal monarchical states of *Europe* had *plenty* of warfare from the 14th century onwards.



Verv wrote:
The factors that caused these wars are no longer relevant.



ckaihatsu wrote:
Like what factors?



Verv wrote:
War then was driven by uncertainty and the need to proactively fight just to survive.



And how do countries behave *today* that's *different*? The *terrain* is the same, that of seeking new markets for nationalist corporate industries, versus the same of *other* countries, as for airplane production orders, or whatever.


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ckaihatsu wrote:
You seem to be unaware of *imperialism*:



Verv wrote:
Which still exists, but in a friendlier form, because the world is more certain, and the pax America is so complete.

And my words were that it does not necessarily impact people negatively, not that it never does.



What do you think of China's Belt and Road Initiative?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Would you answer my question -- are you going to stand-aside when it's reckoning time for the bourgeoisie?



Verv wrote:
I will not fight a class war in any Communist sense of the word.



Okay, good to hear, thanks.


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Verv wrote:
The Korean war was caused largely by the Soviet Union not wanting to allow a democratic union of Korea.

I think the other wars would require more specialized knowledge than what I have and I am not about to start getting into a Wikipedia-driven online argument about them. ^^



ckaihatsu wrote:
You're describing Korea in the context of the postwar Cold War.

You really have *no position* on the Vietnam War? Was it worth it? Not worth it? Justified? Not?



Verv wrote:
Well, sure. The Korean War took place in the context of the cold war, but do we really need to add more to our argument?

If it’s OK for the USSR to oppose democratic union between the Koreas in 1950, why is it so bad for the US to fight its own war for realpolitik reasons in Vietnam?



So all of the conflict and warfare of the Cold War was legitimate and *justified*, according to you. Would you like to *elaborate* on this at all?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
Do you have any comment on offshore *tax havens* or corporate *money laundering*?



Verv wrote:
This is, of course, very wrong, and amounts to stealing from the people.



ckaihatsu wrote:
How can this problem be overcome so that it doesn't continue?



Verv wrote:
No oligarchs running the society.



That means *no monarchies*, right?


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ckaihatsu wrote:
What about parliament?



Verv wrote:
Yes, the authorities should strive to be good to their subjects, and this would involve degrees of representation that are not found solely in the monarch.



Okay, so monarchies, and parliament, according to you -- what about the judiciary?
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