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BS: More on conspiracy and US politics

Jack the Sailor 19 Jul 11 - 11:37 PM
Ron Davies 19 Jul 11 - 10:32 PM
Don Firth 19 Jul 11 - 03:32 PM
pdq 19 Jul 11 - 03:17 PM
akenaton 19 Jul 11 - 03:06 PM
Don Firth 19 Jul 11 - 02:05 PM
GUEST,number 6 19 Jul 11 - 12:36 PM
GUEST,stringsinger 19 Jul 11 - 10:31 AM
akenaton 19 Jul 11 - 03:36 AM
Donuel 18 Jul 11 - 10:00 PM
Donuel 18 Jul 11 - 09:36 PM
GUEST,999 18 Jul 11 - 09:31 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 06:41 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 06:36 PM
Ron Davies 18 Jul 11 - 06:34 PM
michaelr 18 Jul 11 - 05:01 PM
Little Hawk 18 Jul 11 - 04:56 PM
Little Hawk 18 Jul 11 - 04:43 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 04:26 PM
akenaton 18 Jul 11 - 03:48 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 03:47 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 03:33 PM
Don Firth 18 Jul 11 - 03:27 PM
Ron Davies 18 Jul 11 - 02:56 PM
pdq 18 Jul 11 - 02:51 PM
Little Hawk 18 Jul 11 - 02:20 PM
Little Hawk 18 Jul 11 - 02:18 PM
Ebbie 18 Jul 11 - 02:00 PM
Amos 18 Jul 11 - 01:47 PM
Little Hawk 18 Jul 11 - 01:10 PM
GUEST,999 18 Jul 11 - 11:10 AM
artbrooks 18 Jul 11 - 09:57 AM
Ron Davies 18 Jul 11 - 09:26 AM
akenaton 18 Jul 11 - 04:45 AM
akenaton 18 Jul 11 - 04:39 AM
Don Firth 17 Jul 11 - 11:44 PM
Ebbie 17 Jul 11 - 10:59 PM
Don Firth 17 Jul 11 - 10:25 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jul 11 - 08:04 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jul 11 - 07:30 PM
pdq 17 Jul 11 - 07:29 PM
pdq 17 Jul 11 - 07:21 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jul 11 - 07:18 PM
gnu 17 Jul 11 - 07:18 PM
Don Firth 17 Jul 11 - 07:11 PM
pdq 17 Jul 11 - 07:03 PM
Little Hawk 17 Jul 11 - 06:02 PM
akenaton 17 Jul 11 - 05:41 PM
Don Firth 17 Jul 11 - 05:23 PM
pdq 17 Jul 11 - 05:18 PM

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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 11:37 PM

>>>Ake...

please read my post:

               Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
               From: pdq - PM
               Date: 17 Jul 11 - 05:18 PM

               3. Economics {of Karl Marx}


It shows that Karl Marx had another meaning for "capital" than the current one that we assume he meant, properly called the "free market". <<

I just read the article. No where does it say or even imply that Marx said "the free market = Capitalism."

I studied Labor economics under a professor who was a scholar of Marx. All my other business and Econ Profs were pro-capital. I've heard the "labour theory of Capital" explained in detail. Believe me when I tell you that Marx used the same definition of Capital as Adam Smith or any other serious economist does. That doesn't make his conclusions any more valid. As your article points out. Many of his assumptions are highly contestable. But he certainly was using the correct definitions.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ron Davies
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 10:32 PM

At the risk of making this a musical thread, here's a phenomenon which has at least as much significance as the other conspiracy theories which have graced this thread.

A professor's cat recently climbed onto the piano.   The professor recorded her one-minute piece, then took down the notes. Sounds very much like Webern, by report--12 tone composition.   Except it is missing the G natural and the B flat.

But these are the very notes which begin Domenico Scarlatti's prelude and fugue called " The Cat".

Make of it what you will.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 03:32 PM

See what I mean?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 03:17 PM

Ake...

please read my post:

               Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
               From: pdq - PM
               Date: 17 Jul 11 - 05:18 PM

               3. Economics {of Karl Marx}


It shows that Karl Marx had another meaning for "capital" than the current one that we assume he meant, properly called the "free market".


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 03:06 PM

nothing changes the system......try to change that, they will kill you.

All the divisive issues that Frank mentions are in fact encouraged
There is only one hard and fast rule "the system must survive"
See how they are punishing us at this time because greed got out of hand...this punishment is surely not in the rules of the game, the financial crash cannot be blamed on the Unions or socialism, it was sheer raw capitalist greed.

and dont think it impossible to see the tanks on the streets of US or UK cities, they have been there before and will be there again.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 02:05 PM

Exactly so, Stringsinger!

Those who keep blathering on about how "All-Powerful" the forces of power and greed are and insist that there is nothing anyone can do about it, as far as I'm concerned (and I'm not alone in this) are actually aiding and abetting those forces.

"You can't fight City Hall!"
"You can't fight City Hall!"
"You can't fight City Hall!"
"You can't fight City Hall!"
"You can't fight City Hall!"
   ad nauseum

The folks at City Hall are given to smirk a lot when they hear people say that.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: GUEST,number 6
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 12:36 PM

Reading through this thread ..... I find it rather humorous indeed !!

Keep it going dougheads .... :-)

biLL


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: GUEST,stringsinger
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 10:31 AM

The protests against the Vietnam War were successful eventually.
Not at first but a groundswell started with a few dedicated people.
Labor unions created the "weekend" as we know it. Social Security
was quite a battlefield when it was first employed.
Margaret Mead's quote is applicable here, the one about the small group of people changing the world. I have seen this happen with various world events such as the tearing down of the Berlin Wall and "Perestroika". There were a small group of dedicated Americans in Russia talking to Gorbachev through his doctor. One of their messages
was about "a new way of thinking".
    Attitudes are changing about the LBGT community.
There were segregated libraries dramatically integrated in the South during the Civil Rights Movement. Change is happening in Wisconsin as
corrupt politicians are being recalled. Change does happen when people who are dedicated to it start with small groups and enlarge.
    One person's "conspiracy" may be another's "fact". I consider
what Republicans are doing in todays House of Representatives a conspiracy to undermine democracy as we know it and replace it with
a theocratic authority. ALEC is part of this process.
    Change happens. Small groups start it. A Black president? Who knew!


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 19 Jul 11 - 03:36 AM

In satire, as in most things, minimalism is more effective.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Donuel
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 10:00 PM

OK the theroy of cut cap and balance the budget is that we will not owe any money.

What else would we reap?

The inability to ever respond to a recession. There would be no money for unemployment insurance. There would be no money for regulating agencies be it for clean air and water or safe food, medicine or products.

It is a Corporate paradise in Tea Party heaven.
$2 or less an hour jobs right here in the good ol US of A.
That is a savings compared to shipping from China.

In Tea Party HEaven Sates Rights would rule and the only Federal Government is the Dept of Defense, which argualby is a safety program but will be tolerated to satisfy arms dealers.

In Tea Party Heaven, The States would control education and the roads. Checkpoints would be built to keep out outside agitators.
They would make a profit by confiscating forbidden items such as food clothing and large quantites of cash.

In Tea Party HEaven you birth certificate might not be accepted if you try to enter Kansas, especailly if you were born in NYC.

In Tea Party heaven you are not your brother's keeper. If someone keeps over in front of you it is their respondibility to pull themselves up by their own boot straps. If it happens to be you, Jesus will save you.

In Tea Party HEaven you could elect your own President, since some States are composed of people who are not real Americans.

In Tea Party Heaven if your State has a nuclear weapon facility you will have authority over its use, expecially if you have a general in the DOD from your own State.

In Tea Party Heaven, everyone will get what they deserve by the fruits of their own labor, slave labor, wage slavery or trafficing in illeagals.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Donuel
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 09:36 PM

No my name is Don and always has been.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: GUEST,999
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 09:31 PM

Gentlemen, it's just too hot for all this acrimonious banter that is now so confusing to read that the only folks who could make it clearer than it is are Teabaggers.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 06:41 PM

By the way, this last post was me, Don.

Just above that is Ron.

Don.

Ron.

Got it?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 06:36 PM

Here's a way of making the system work.

It might not be too hard to sell the idea to both parties, since recently many elections here in the U. S. have been very close, and each party has lost votes because of third parties and independent candidates. This is a way of keeping a basically two-party system going, but forcing them to be much more responsive to the will of the voters.

Preferential of Instant Run-Off voting.

The system is used in Australia and in a number of other countries, and in several cities in the United States, such as San Francisco and Oakland, California, and Portland, Maine, and Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota (as a short-list of examples). It is also the method used by a number of non-governmental organizations, such as the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts to choose the Oscar winners and the Hugo Awards for science fiction.

There is a succinct and graphic explanation of how it works on YouTube.

CLICKY.

This way, third parties and independent candidates actually DO stand a chance and you can vote for them without fear that you are wasting your vote on a candidate you know doesn't stand a chance just as a protest. And you have a much better chance of not letting what you regard as the perfect choice being the enemy of a perhaps not-so-perfect choice, but whom you regard as much better than the other leading candidate.

Here. Watch it again:    CLICKY.


Got it? Now, think about it.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ron Davies
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 06:34 PM

C'mon LH.    Get to know the gang.   Admittedly there's only a letter difference between Don and Ron.   But all you'd have to do is start investing about 2 minutes in proofreading your missives and your error rate would go way down.

Of course whether the quality of your argumentation would go up is another question. I wouldn't presume to address that issue in this post.

But at least it would be clear who you're talking to.   You have to start somewhere.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: michaelr
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 05:01 PM

To try to work OUTSIDE it has, so far, proven futile.

So has trying to work inside it. The spineless Democrats (and particularly Obama) have betrayed their progressive constituency over and over, and they will never get it until we Stop Voting For Them (holding our noses) and instead vote our conscience.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 04:56 PM

Don, I don't object to you participating in the political system...or to anyone else doing so...if that suits them. If it suits you, then do it.

I have absolutely no desire to participate in the present day political system other than by voting, and by writing (songs and prose), and by discussing the political situation some with people I know.

I'll explain what I mean. Joan Baez has spent her whole life participating directly in various forms of political action because it suits her temperament to do so, and she's good at it, and she wants to. Bravo for Joan! I salute her.

Bob Dylan never much wanted to participate in political action, and he almost always avoided doing so, because it didn't suit his temperament to do so, and he didn't want to. Instead he wrote great songs that helped change and focus a lot of people's view of things, and that helped inspire political change. Bravo for Bob! I salute him.

They both did what suited them best, and it was quite different in each case, and that's all I ask of anyone. Do what suits you. If it suits you to work through the existing political system, that's great. It doesn't attract me in the least to do so, I want nothing to do with it, that's just fine, because I am not you.

And that's as it should be.

I am not sulking in a corner. I'm enjoying the things I love to do.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 04:43 PM

Yeah, man! ;-) I've been getting Don Firth and Ron Davies confused for so long on this forum that I thought I should start calling them Ron Firth and Don Ravies instead, because they're like Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

The primary difference between them, though, is that Ron Davies is quite a bit nastier, meaner, and more insulting in his attitude toward others than Don Firth is, but other than that it gets hard keeping straight which one of them is doing the talking at times.

Don Firth is definitely the more reachable of the two, so I must apologize, Don, for getting one of Ron's vitriolic little sallies confused with one of yours. Sorry! ;-D

Ron's standard method is a engage in grotesque hyperbole in which he stretches his "opponent's" logical premises to the last ridiculous extreme, thus erecting a straw man the height of the Empire State Building at which to cast his verbal barbs.

His latest example of that technique being this statement:

You can't ask LH to reveal his secret sources which confirm beyond doubt that shadowy all-powerful capitalistic forces manipulate everything.   If he did so, the sources wouldn't be secret anymore.    All his fun would be lost. And a major source of entertainment on Mudcat would be gone.

Wow! Grotesque hyperbole, bearing no resemblance to anything I actually think or have said. I have no secret sources, never claimed I have them, and I am worried about not just capitalistic forces but also socialist governmental forces (when they are oppressive, and sometimes they are), and religious and social forces of other types when they are oppressive, and sometimes they are.

Your reduction of whatever I say into grossly exaggerated and all-embracing stereotypes with no qualifiers, exceptions or shades of grey is total bullshit, Ron, and would be worthy of Dr Goebbels or Joseph Stalin's propaganda missives. You do it not out of any honesty, but merely out of the desire to put down, damage, and ridicule whoever you're doing it to. You're one of the meanest-spirited people I've even encountered online. I don't usually figure there's even any use acknowledging you, and it's strictly because of your mean attitude toward other people, not because of your beliefs or opinions (many of which I share).


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 04:26 PM

No, Ake, I'm not "reliving," I'm living and doing.

You learn from history. And then you THINK about possible courses of action.

Everything you and Little Hawk suggest is negative. "Don't do this, don't do that, don't participate in the system, etc,. etc."

What's your suggestion? General strike? Bloody revolution? Go live in a cave?"

Don't you have anything beyond "Don't participate in the system" to suggest? Something positive? Something that you think might work? (And that does not include simply sulking in a corner).

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 03:48 PM

By throwing our bodies on the wheels and gears, Mario meant exactly what Little Hawk has detailed above.....Stop participating in a game which is obviously corrupt and weighted heavily towards one particular team. Any attempt to alter the rules and keep the game in play will be quickly circumvented by the top team, who pay the wages of the referees and line judges.

Ron is unfortunately morphing into a bit of an amateur satirist....just a little bit, but very amateur.
Perhaps its time for Ebbs to introduce him to her stiletto....after blowing off the wood chipping of course.

Don is just a grumpy old cock who likes to relive the times when he ruled the roost


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 03:47 PM

Why do I suddenly find myself thinking of that character in David Copperfield by Charles Dickens, the "very 'umble" Uriah Heep?

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 03:33 PM

Just checked back. Thank you, pdq.

Obviously Little Hawk is a bit more bewildered than usual today.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 03:27 PM

Getting ready to post the following, I noted that the discussion has gone on apace. I just ran across THIS:

"Why, then, does Don repeatedly accuse me of his own sins when mine are but a pale reflection of the intemperate example that he sets? ;-)

For instance, he said to Akenaton:

"You throw your body on the wheel, and the rest of us will stay here on earth to try to improve matters. Tell us what day you plan to do it and we'll celebrate St. Ake's Day, the day of labor's most recent holy martyr. Exactly which bits of your purple prose would you like on your memorial?   There's quite an array to choose from. "

You throw your body on the wheel, and the rest of us will stay here on earth to try to improve matters. Tell us what day you plan to do it and we'll celebrate St. Ake's Day, the day of labor's most recent holy martyr. Exactly which bits of your purple prose would you like on your memorial?   There's quite an array to choose from. "


When in the hell did I post THAT, Little Hawk!!???

####

Now. On with what I had prepared before I encountered the above canard.

Okay, Ake, first this:

"You or I or Little Hawk.....couldn't fight our way out of the proverbial wet paper bag Don! We need unity to fight anything—"

Please excuse me for shouting, but THAT'S WHAT I'VE BEEN SAYING ALL ALONG!

Then this:

". . . you and the Party System you support, promote disunity."

I do not SUPPORT the Party System. But as it stands, it's the only system we've got. To try to work OUTSIDE it has, so far, proven futile. The best you can do with a third party or an independent candidate is to garner a small percentage of the votes, and more often than not, this causes the acceptable but not perfect candidate to lose by a narrow margin. For recent example, I cite the Bush vs. Gore election. Ralph Nader pulled enough votes away from Al Gore to throw the election into a situation where it was decided in Bush's favor by hanky-panky in Florida (where the governor is Bush's brother) and the outcome was determined by a conservatively biased Supreme Court. In the actual popular vote, Gore won by a narrow margin

And way back, Theodore Roosevelt, a Republican—and a Progressive, back in the days when the Republican Party meant things like "trust busting" and breaking up monopolies (which it now opposes) didn't like the direction that Taft and the Republican Party were going, so he tried another run at the presidency himself. He couldn't get the Republican Party nomination over a run for second term for Taft, so he and others started the Progressive "Bull Moose Party." The result was that it split the Republican Party vote and Woodrow Wilson—a Democrat—won the election.

That has been the history of third parties and independent candidates in this country.

I DO NOT LIKE IT ONE BIT, but like it or not, that is the REALITY of the situation. And if you are to have a ghost of a chance to have things go the way you would like to see them go, it is the deeply flawed system you have to work within.

Quite a number of elections have been influenced negatively by people with high (and, indeed, admirable) ideals who, in their idealism, insist on "making the perfect become the enemy of the good." Simply put, you have two prominent candidates. One is a guy you don't like much, but at least some of his policies you find acceptable. The other is a total skunk, and if he were elected, it would be a disaster for the whole country.

But wait! There is a third candidate. He has an excellent reputation for honesty and integrity and his ideas very closely match your own. But he has little or no actual political experience. Maybe he was the mayor of some mid-west city and did a great job. But until he announces his candidacy, the vast majority of the country has never heard of him. And he doesn't have much of a campaign chest. And the media only gives him a casual nod, while concentrating on where the news is, the two major candidates.

Comes the election. The third candidate pulls 5% of the vote from the guy whose sort of okay but you don't really like that much, and the Skunk gets elected by a margin of less than a percentage point.

You do the math.

That's been the history of third parties and independent candidates in this country. And NO, I DON'T LIKE IT!

But THAT, sports fans, is the system we are STUCK with.

So what are you going to do? Work for and vote for that semi-acceptable guy in an effort to keep the Skunk from screwing the country, or vote for your Third Party Hero, so you can sit back and feel all idealistic and smug, while the Skunk lets Wall Street go mad, allows regulatory agencies to be dissolved, and starts a half-dozen wars around the world?

That's the price of ignoring reality, even if you don't like it!

And don't try to tell me that's not the way it works. I think I can cite a number of fairly blatant examples within recent years.

####

And Little Hawk, perhaps it would help to understand what you are really trying to say if you would express yourself a bit more like you did in your last post instead of banging on about how all-powerful and corrupt the system is—and not saying anything about taking action. And perhaps making a few suggestions on what kind of actions might be workable, or at least worth trying.

I mean (and I am not the only one who has made note of this) you really do come on like you're sitting cross-legged on some mountain top, looking at the situation far below your august height, and remarking on the views people express, especially in these Mudcat discussions, and go "tsk tsk tsk," as if you were observing an ant farm.

That can really get up people's noses ("Yup! There goes Little Hawk again!") and induce them to skip your posts entirely.

Think on it.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ron Davies
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 02:56 PM

"it all involves conspiring".   Hey Ebbie, that's not fair. You can't ask LH to reveal his secret sources which confirm beyond doubt that shadowy all-powerful capitalistic forces manipulate everything.   If he did so, the sources wouldn't be secret anymore.    All his fun would be lost. And a major source of entertainment on Mudcat would be gone.

We certainly wouldn't want that.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 02:51 PM

L.H...

In all fairness, the quote you credit to Propaganda Minister Firth came from Ronnie Rude. Please check to see if I'm not correct.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 02:20 PM

Other people are often ahead of me, Ebbie, and that's how I learn new and useful things. ;-)

As for the stuff that's going on in the halls of power, I'm interested in it, sure, but I certainly don't claim to KNOW all of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 02:18 PM

Okay, Amos. ;-) But if you make even a cursory study of Don Firth's many personal remarks to me and Akenaton, you will find numerous instances of smug, superior, snide condescension in them...and not couched in subtle form either!

Why, then, does Don repeatedly accuse me of his own sins when mine are but a pale reflection of the intemperate example that he sets? ;-)

For instance, he said to Akenaton:

"You throw your body on the wheel, and the rest of us will stay here on earth to try to improve matters. Tell us what day you plan to do it and we'll celebrate St. Ake's Day, the day of labor's most recent holy martyr. Exactly which bits of your purple prose would you like on your memorial?   There's quite an array to choose from. "

My, my! What a way to address another person! ;-D Don goes beyond mere subtle implications of some sort of superiority other people, Amos, and shows rank contempt for them, insults them most thoroughly, and you can practically hear him licking his chops with delight while he does it.

So why does the pot keep calling the kettle black? I think Don Firth would be utterly incensed if others treated him in the cavalier and personally offensive way he treats them when they dare not to agree with him on every point.

He also said to me and Akenaton:

"Ebbie and I will save your sorry asses."

More snide condescension. The fact of the matter is that neither Ebbie nor Don Firth have anything to do with saving my or Akenaton's "sorry little asses" from anything. It is pompous, vainglorious, and pretentious for Don Firth to suggest that he is somehow the saviour of all those who don't see things his way. It almost sounds like a form of saintly martyrdom, in fact, the way he goes on... ;-)

My basic contention, Amos, is that Don Firth himself is guilty of much of what he accuses others of in regards to lofty smugness...only a great deal more so. I think he lacks the ability to respect people with whom he disagrees. I do not lack that ability. I am willing to look at another point of view, perhaps disagree with it radically, but still respect the person to whom I am speaking. I only object to them not returning the favor.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ebbie
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 02:00 PM

"Ebbie - At the top of the power chain, though, there are some specific groups who are more powerful than most others, and this thread was apparently started about one of them. It's still all "business as usual" as far as I'm concerned, and it's been happening ever since money was invented, if not before. It all involves conspiring...that is, it is done secretly, behind closed doors." LH

And you know all this precisely HOW?

As far as I can see, you do NOT know more about how this world runs than a great many other people- laying out a detailed scenario is not necessarily new information. Sometimes other people are way ahead of you, or at least cheek by jowl.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Amos
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 01:47 PM

The underlying tenor of many of your remarks comes across as a kind of apathetic superior omniscience, LH, whether intended so or not. I have the same problem, just with more syllables. ;>)


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 01:10 PM

You keep conveniently misinterpreting my intentions or my message to suit the particular desire of your argument, Don, thus erecting a straw man whom you can then accuse of being in favor of "inaction". I never said anything to suggest I was in favor of inaction. To those who are inclined to take action, whatever that action may be, (and provided it's not destructive) I say "Act!" Some people's action is to write, some to sing, some to run for city hall, some to do something else entirely. Don't expect ME to take exactly the same sort of outward actions YOU would take, and we're on solid ground. I'm not proposing passivity, I'm not proposing "giving up", I'm proposing personal creativity, each in his or her own best way. I'm proposing that each individual work hardest on changing HIMSELF or HERSELF into the ideal he or she wishes to see happen in the world. I see life as personal evolution. Out of that arises social evolution. I think you're trying to change others, but the real challenge in life is to change oneself.

Ebbie - There are a simply a vast number of different shadowy, unscrupulous little groups of people in business, banking, and politics...they are working for their own immediate gain...often at cross purposes to one another...and it happens billions of times a year in millions of different locations. That's business as usual. At the top of the power chain, though, there are some specific groups who are more powerful than most others, and this thread was apparently started about one of them. It's still all "business as usual" as far as I'm concerned, and it's been happening ever since money was invented, if not before. It all involves conspiring...that is, it is done secretly, behind closed doors.

If someone identifies a particular powerful group such as the Bilderberg group or the PNAC or the CFR...those groups do exist. And they have considerable effect. But I would not call them "all-powerful". Nor do I suggest not opposing them which is the thing Don keeps suggesting that I am suggesting. Where he gets that notion, I don't know.

I think the basic thing that bothers you and Don about my comments is this: I have no faith in either the Democratic or the Republican parties as a political vehicle for social progress, and I will not jump onside your partisan ticket and support it against "the other side".

This bugs Don. He interprets it as colorless neutrality. Ha! I despise both the Democratic and Republican parties. I consider Americans to be mentally enslaved by those 2 parties. I don't call that neutral. I call it standing entirely outside the partisan sandbox Americans fight their battles in and saying, "That is not my sandbox." Why on Earth would I choose to back one set of unconscionable scoundrels against another set of unconscionable scoundrels?

You want me to back either Al Capone or Lucky Luciano? No thanks. I'm not in favor of organized crime.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: GUEST,999
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 11:10 AM

"That is, if someone with a bigger club isn't eating you."

The Diners' Club no doubt.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: artbrooks
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 09:57 AM

When you are sitting in your cave, chipping away with a piece of flint so that you can cook the rat you caught, you may remember 'the machine' with some nostalgia. That is, if someone with a bigger club isn't eating you.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ron Davies
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 09:26 AM

Fine, Ake.   You throw your body on the wheel, and the rest of us will stay here on earth to try to improve matters.    Tell us what day you plan to do it and we'll celebrate St. Ake's Day, the day of labor's most recent holy martyr.

Exactly which bits of your purple prose would you like on your memorial?   There's quite an array to choose from.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 04:45 AM

To paraphrase Mario Savio's great words at Berkley, We must throw our bodies on the wheels and in the gears......we must stop the machine from working at all!


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 18 Jul 11 - 04:39 AM

You or I or Little Hawk.....couldn't fight our way out of the proverbial wet paper bag Don! We need unity to fight anything, you and the Party System you support, promote disunity.

As a left wing radical, I see good things in the some facets of conservatism and to a lesser extent in "liberal ideology". I am not constrained by artificial political barriers.....that is the way to unity and ultimately, freedom.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 11:44 PM

No, Little Hawk, when I say that you're "kibbitzing," this doesn't mean I am taking anything personally. What I am commenting on is that whenever this kind of discussion comes up, your contribution is generally to remark that the Forces of Evil (be they political parties, or the dreaded international bankers, or just generally that "the fix is in") are in control, and there is no use in trying to oppose it/them.

That's preaching inaction. Or, as it is often put, "You can't fight City Hall." Well, you can.

And taking this tack IS a form of "colorless neutrality."

You can study the human condition quite well without counseling—by implication—simply giving up.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 10:59 PM

"Business people are constantly meeting behind closed doors and working out plans to promote their own concerns, meaning increase their profits. They do this by taking over markets, driving competitors out of business or taking them over, forming monopolies if they can, and influencing politicians to pass "helpful" legislation. To call any of that a "conspiracy" (a very dramatic and badly compromised word in today's dialogue) is to overlook the fact that it is normal business practice not to tell the whole world exactly what you are up to when you are engaged in such self-aggrandizing business maneuvers. It wouldn't succeed if everyone knew what you were up to. ;-) So you can call it a "conspiracy theory" if you want to pooh-pooh it...but it's just business as usual." Little Hawk

It appears that you are of two minds, LH- because this paragraph is basically what we have been saying: It is business as usual.

Not some shadowy, all-powerful, unscrupulous group(s) that get together once or twice a year to make decisions on what to do next, group(s) that have been doing this for generations if not hundreds of years. And that proposition is what you have been agreeing with for some time now.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 10:25 PM

Nobody, including progressives and the Left in general, are saying that "all business is bad and corrupt."

pdq overstates, as usual, fully intending to mischaracterize.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 08:04 PM

It would be absurd to claim that all business is bad. I'm very much in favour of small to medium-sized business, competition, traditional family-owned businesses, proprietorships, small farming, and every sort of individual iniatiative like that. It comes out of the local community and benefits the local community.

What I am opposed to is gigantic corporate trusts that move jobs and money offshore and exploit populations in poorer countries while destroying the jobs of people here in North America. I am also opposed to gigantic banks and lending institutions that put smaller banks out of business and put our whole society deeply in debt by creating vast amounts of fictional money (in the form of debt). And most of all, I am opposed to the Federal Reserve Bank (a private corporation) and the World Bank.

Understood, pdq? I am very much in favor of small scale locally-based capitalism that employs local people and produces local product.

I do envision the possibility of a completely different type of society that wouldn't use money at all...but that's an idea for the distant future, not something I expect to see happen in my own lifetime. Such a society was depicted fictionally in the Star Trek series, and it's a very good idea for creating a truly just, peaceful, progressive, and democratic society.

If people now can't imagine that it could be done, I think they are mistaken about that.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:30 PM

"You two guys don't have a dog in this fight. So why do you find it necessary to criticize those who do? Just the urge to sit back, feel "superior," and kibbitz?"

No. It has nothing to do with criticizing you, Don, and I can't figure why you would take it that way. It has to do with the fact that I am deeply interested in the human condition and the development of human society all over the world, not just in my own nation. I talk about it because I'm interested in the subject for its own sake, not because I have any desire to personally criticize you or oppose you in any fashion.

Your reaction always seems to be to respong to what I say by personally criticizing me, though, implying that there is something seriously wrong with me, because I don't see everything your way. ;-) So I think the shoe is, in fact, on the other foot. I'm the one who is being compared by you to something Dante said about "colorless neutrality" when I am anything but neutral.

I am not comparing you to anyone, nor do I mind the fact that you see things differently than I do, nor do I think you don't have a right to talk about a subject just because it doesn't affect you directly. I think anyone has a right to talk about any subject at all, regardless of whether or not they "have a dog in this fight".


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:29 PM

There are actually five (or more) separate groups of people that control the country.

Some are organized crime, honest business, crooked business, investment banking elite and the government.

The Left's claim that all business is bad and corrupt is the biggest pile of crap since Karl Marx wrote his fecal contamination in the mid 1800s.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:21 PM

History of Federal Banks...


    * 1791–1811: First Bank of the United States
    * 1811–1816: No central bank
    * 1816–1836: Second Bank of the United States
    * 1837–1862: Free Bank Era
    * 1846–1921: Independent Treasury System
    * 1863–1913: National Banks
    * 1913–Present: Federal Reserve System

Andrew Jackson ended the Second Bank of the United States in 1836.

Kennedy ordered an end to the Federal Reserve System in 1963 and as dead three months later.

If people want the truth about people who hold the real hidden power, don't bother with ALEC. They give advise on writing bills that are Constitutional and are passed in the legislatures of states as well as Congress. The bills are out for the public to see and comment on. Not true of the secretive "movers and shakers" whom we do not see.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:18 PM

Very interesting stuff, pdq.

Business people are constantly meeting behind closed doors and working out plans to promote their own concerns, meaning increase their profits. They do this by taking over markets, driving competitors out of business or taking them over, forming monopolies if they can, and influencing politicians to pass "helpful" legislation. To call any of that a "conspiracy" (a very dramatic and badly compromised word in today's dialogue) is to overlook the fact that it is normal business practice not to tell the whole world exactly what you are up to when you are engaged in such self-aggrandizing business maneuvers. It wouldn't succeed if everyone knew what you were up to. ;-) So you can call it a "conspiracy theory" if you want to pooh-pooh it...but it's just business as usual.

The same is true of strategy in war. To deceive the enemy as to your intentions is the name of the game. That requires secrecy and false propaganda.

In the case of big business, the "enemy" (meaning the helpless target in this case) is the general public and those few idealistic politicians who might stand in the way of graft, trickery, and corruption and who cannot be bought.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: gnu
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:18 PM

Sounds like an infernal discussion.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:11 PM

Okay, then. You two guys don't have a dog in this fight. So why do you find it necessary to criticize those who do? Just the urge to sit back, feel "superior," and kibbitz?

Okay, I guess we can just go on about our business and ignore you.

By the way, Little Hawk, remember Dante? You are SO proving my point!

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 07:03 PM

My previous post seems to show that Marx did not use the term "capitalism" as a synonym of "free market".

Here is a post with lots to think about...some of it may actually be true...


"THE MORGAN CONNECTION

George Peabody, a Massachusetts's trader, set up a banking house - George Peabody & Co. - in London in 1837. He became regarded as a "financial ambassador in London. Carrol Quigley attributes the use of tax-exempt foundations for manipulation of society to Peabody, seen in his IllumInati Peabody foundation. Daniel Colt Gilman, a member of the Skull & Bones and first President of the Carnegie Institution, was involved in the establishment of the Peabody foundation. He was in such high regard by the elite that they have erected a statue of him across from the Bank of England. Peabody was getting old and needed a younger partner. Junius Morgan, of Hartford, Connetticut, was recommended to Peabody. In 1854 Junius and his family arrived in London to join George Peabody & Co. When the elite's concocted American Civil War broke out, Peabody and Junius Morgan raised loans for the North. It appears JunIus played both sides of the war. Ralph Epperson claims Junius was one of the Rothschild agents who shipped supplies to the South. When Peabody retired in 1864 Junius took over the business. The firm was re-named JS. Morgan & Co. That same year Junius' son, J.P. Morgan, became a junior partner in the firm. A year later J.P. left for America to represent the firm in the New York. After the end of the Franco-Prussian War, Junius Morgan was called on to help restore the French etonomy. Around this time his bank was talked of as a rival to the Rothschild's New Court, but Junius was a Rothschild agent, when he prospered so prospered the Rothschilds and the Illuminati. J.S. Morgan & Co. was one of the Rothschild's great power tools in the United States. In 1869 JunIus' son, J.P. Morgan went to London to met with the Rothschilds. They laid out the plans to form Northern Securities, a company that would act as an agent for New Court in the US. J.P. ruling as a proxy for the family. In 1871 Junius' son, J.P. Morgan, made an alliance with Tony Drexel, heir to the powerful Philadelphia bank. Their firm - Drexel, Morgan & Co. -resided in an extravagant new building on Wall St., which is still Morgan headquarters today. After the Europeans got over their lack of confidence at the end of the CIvil War, money began to stream across the ocean to the US., providing massive profit for the firm. It set out to finance the growing number of industrial projects in America. The House of Morgan was getting extremely rich.

Junius retired in 1879 and J.P. took over JS. Morgan & Co., reorganizing It under the title J.P. Morgan & Co. "J.P. Morgan soon became a symbol of the growing centralization of American money." He was very monopolistic. His agents would create cartels through 'Morganization." By 1896 the IllumInati families Payne, Whitney and the Vanderbilts all bad money in Morgan-Guarantee Company which was run by the "J.P. Morgan and Guggenheim outfits."

At a certain point he controlled neariy half the American railroad system. He established the United States Steel Corp. ("based on Andrew Carnegie's Pittsburgh Steel mills") In 1901 by raising the "unprecedented" amount of $1.4 billion. J.P. was adept at creating financial syndicates for the Illuminati, joint efforts to further the "Great Plan." President Welliam Mckinley began prosecuting the Rothschild's Morgan-run Northern Securities under the anti-trust laws in 1900. In 1901 Mckinley ran for a second term and appointed a new vice-president, Theodore Roosevelt, a lock, stock and barrel Illuminatus. Less than a year later he was assassinated. When "Teddy" became president the prosecution of Northern Securities stopped. For this reason some people think Mckinley's death was ordered by J.P. Morgan and the Rothschilds. He was able to set up a syndicate, with the help of Rothschild agent, August Belmont, Jr., that bailed the U.S. out of a Treasury depletion. The syndicate raised $65 billion in gold. The sum would be repaid by an issue of bonds. J.P. received some criticism for the strict terms of the deal. For 5 months in early 1907, J.P. Morgan was in Europe, traveling back and forth between London and Paris, presumably visiting the Rothschild House's there. A. Ralph Epperson writes: "Apparentiy the reason Morgan was in Europe was because the decision was being made to have Morgan precipitate a bank panic in America. When he returned, he started rumors that the KnIckerbocker Bank in New York was insolvent." Panic ensued. People began a mass withdrawal of their deposits - a run. The Knickerbocker run had a domino effect, other banks had runs and the Panic of 1907 ,,was complete." J.P. Morgan oversaw the banking communities response to the Panic of 1907. The whole Incident helped the elite push for a central bank. One man who knew of the plot was historian Frederick Lewis Allen, who wrote in LIFE magazine: ,,...certain chroniclers have arrived at the ingenious conclusion that the Morgan interests took advantage of the unsettled conditions during the autumn of 1907 to precipitate the Panic, guiding It shrewdly as it progressed, so that it would kill off rival banks, and consolidate the pre-eminence of the banks within the Morgan orbit." The Panic of 1907 made people want a powerful central bank that could "protect" the common man from the "abuses of the Wall Street bankers." This whole thing eventually led to the creation of the Federal Reserve. One of the men with the Morgan financial groups was Harold Stanley. Stanley was a member of the Skull & Bones. After J.P.'s death a Morgan firm became Morgan, Stanley & Co. J.P. Morgan died in 1913. HIs son, Harvard educated J.P. Morgan, Jr. took over (most conspiratorial writers do not make a distinction between these two). J.P. Morgan, Jr ran the bank with a team of managers that was led by Thomas Lamont. Morgan, Jr was, like his father, a power-hungry international banker. He was famous for his handling of Immense foreign loans. Most Importantly J.P. Morgan, Jr appears to have followed in the footsteps of the former heads of the House of Morgan by working with the Rothschilds."


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Little Hawk
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 06:02 PM

Don, you and Ebbie are engaging in political action to save little American asses...not little Canadian or British asses. ;-) I don't live in the USA, so you are not saving my little ass. I wish you all the luck in the world regarding USA health care reform, because the present problem in the USA is exactly as you have described it. The people who want to take away your "entitlement" programs, as they duplicitously call it, are simply out for their own financial gain (at the expense of many, many others). The so-called "trickle-down" theory is a mythology that they happily subscribe to, but it is not what happens when they get their way.


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: akenaton
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 05:41 PM

I suddenly feel as if this gigantic weight has been lifted from my shoulders.....:0)


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: Don Firth
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 05:23 PM

Yeah, sure, Ake. Just take it easy.

Okay, Little Hawk. I agree with your list of particulars. But the problem is that there are people who want to take all those things away from people and store the money to, say, pay for someone's heart operation, in their own Swiss bank accounts—and to hell with the poor sod whose heart just quits on him because he couldn't afford the necessary medical care.

It's easy to sat back and enumerate "wouldn't it be a nice world ifs," and indeed it would be nice—in fact a life necessity for some people—but there are people out there who don't see it that way at all. They want to do away with what they call "entitlement programs" (completely forgetting what the word "entitlement" means) such as Social Security and Medicare, which people have paid into all their working lives and which many older people have to rely on to pay the bills and see to their medical needs.

You folks in Canada and the UK have national health care programs in place, so you don't have to sweat it. But the elderly lady who lives upstairs takes a tumble, fractures her pelvis, and winds up in a hospital for several weeks (and I have a specific person in mind that this happened to), racking up many tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills—how is she going to pay for that if they take her "entitlements" away, as some people want to do?

She is entitled to have that covered because she paid for it all her working life.

It's just "academic" to you guys. But it was pretty damned real to her!!

So don't sweat it. Just sit back, take it easy, and kibbitz all you want. Ebbie and I will save your sorry asses.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: More on conspiracy and US politics
From: pdq
Date: 17 Jul 11 - 05:18 PM

3. Economics {of Karl Marx}

Capital Volume 1 begins with an analysis of the idea of commodity production. A commodity is defined as a useful external object, produced for exchange on a market. Thus two necessary conditions for commodity production are the existence of a market, in which exchange can take place, and a social division of labour, in which different people produce different products, without which there would be no motivation for exchange. Marx suggests that commodities have both use-value — a use in other words — and an exchange-value — initially to be understood as their price. Use value can easily be understood, so Marx says, but he insists that exchange value is a puzzling phenomenon, and relative exchange values need to be explained. Why does a quantity of one commodity exchange for a given quantity of another commodity? His explanation is in terms of the labour input required to produce the commodity, or rather, the socially necessary labour, which is labour exerted at the average level of intensity and productivity for that branch of activity within the economy. Thus the labour theory of value asserts that the value of a commodity is determined by the quantity of socially necessary labour time required to produce it. Marx provides a two stage argument for the labour theory of value. The first stage is to argue that if two objects can be compared in the sense of being put on either side of an equals sign, then there must be a 'third thing of identical magnitude in both of them' to which they are both reducible. As commodities can be exchanged against each other, there must, Marx argues, be a third thing that they have in common. This then motivates the second stage, which is a search for the appropriate 'third thing', which is labour in Marx's view, as the only plausible common element. Both steps of the argument are, of course, highly contestable.

Capitalism is distinctive, Marx argues, in that it involves not merely the exchange of commodities, but the advancement of capital, in the form of money, with the purpose of generating profit through the purchase of commodities and their transformation into other commodities which can command a higher price, and thus yield a profit. Marx claims that no previous theorist has been able adequately to explain how capitalism as a whole can make a profit. Marx's own solution relies on the idea of exploitation of the worker. In setting up conditions of production the capitalist purchases the worker's labour power — his ability to labour — for the day. The cost of this commodity is determined in the same way as the cost of every other; i.e. in terms of the amount of socially necessary labour power required to produce it. In this case the value of a day's labour power is the value of the commodities necessary to keep the worker alive for a day. Suppose that such commodities take four hours to produce. Thus the first four hours of the working day is spent on producing value equivalent to the value of the wages the worker will be paid. This is known as necessary labour. Any work the worker does above this is known as surplus labour, producing surplus value for the capitalist. Surplus value, according to Marx, is the source of all profit. In Marx's analysis labour power is the only commodity which can produce more value than it is worth, and for this reason it is known as variable capital. Other commodities simply pass their value on to the finished commodities, but do not create any extra value. They are known as constant capital. Profit, then, is the result of the labour performed by the worker beyond that necessary to create the value of his or her wages. This is the surplus value theory of profit.

It appears to follow from this analysis that as industry becomes more mechanised, using more constant capital and less variable capital, the rate of profit ought to fall. For as a proportion less capital will be advanced on labour, and only labour can create value. In Capital Volume 3 Marx does indeed make the prediction that the rate of profit will fall over time, and this is one of the factors which leads to the downfall of capitalism. (However, as pointed out by Marx's able expositor Paul Sweezy in The Theory of Capitalist Development, the analysis is problematic.) A further consequence of this analysis is a difficulty for the theory that Marx did recognise, and tried, albeit unsuccessfully, to meet also in Capital Volume 3. It follows from the analysis so far that labour intensive industries ought to have a higher rate of profit than those which use less labour. Not only is this empirically false, it is theoretically unacceptable. Accordingly, Marx argued that in real economic life prices vary in a systematic way from values. Providing the mathematics to explain this is known as the transformation problem, and Marx's own attempt suffers from technical difficulties. Although there are known techniques for solving this problem now (albeit with unwelcome side consequences), we should recall that the labour theory of value was initially motivated as an intuitively plausible theory of price. But when the connection between price and value is rendered as indirect as it is in the final theory, the intuitive motivation of the theory drains away. But even if the defender of the theory is still not ready to concede defeat, a further objection appears devastating. Marx's assertion that only labour can create surplus value is unsupported by any argument or analysis, and can be argued to be merely an artifact of the nature of his presentation. Any commodity can be picked to play a similar role. Consequently with equal justification one could set out a corn theory of value, arguing that corn has the unique power of creating more value than it costs. Formally this would be identical to the labour theory of value.

Although Marx's economic analysis is based on the discredited labour theory of value, there are elements of his theory that remain of worth. The Cambridge economist Joan Robinson, in An Essay on Marxian Economics, picked out two aspects of particular note. First, Marx's refusal to accept that capitalism involves a harmony of interests between worker and capitalist, replacing this with a class based analysis of the worker's struggle for better wages and conditions of work, versus the capitalist's drive for ever greater profits. Second, Marx's denial that there is any long-run tendency to equilibrium in the market, and his descriptions of mechanisms which underlie the trade-cycle of boom and bust. Both provide a salutary corrective to aspects of orthodox economic theory.

       ~ Stanford Encyclopedia


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