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Thread: Capital Failure Via Uncle Sam

  1. #1
    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Capital Failure Via Uncle Sam

    Monuments to capitalist failure
    Jomo Thomas
    2006/11/24


    If an international poll was conducted regarding the failure of the economic systems of socialism and capitalism, more people will identify socialism as the failed system. If you ask people to take another look because socialism emerged only in 1917 with the Russian revolution, was always under siege and never given a chance to develop and grow, most people may brush you off with disdain. No contest, most will say, capitalism wins easily.


    Much has happened since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1990; the most important of which is the transformation from a bi-polar to a uni-polar world that capitalism rules supreme. Today, after 16 years of unfettered ‘capitalist development,’ we can look back and proclaim that the world is not free, and the free market is really an illusion. The evidence proves beyond doubt that capitalism is failing badly.


    At the same time the big powers were celebrating the demise of the socialist bloc and proclaiming the end of history, Daniel Ortega, the revolutionary guerrilla leader, was being booted out of office in Nicaragua. Violetta Chamorra took control and the American government promised aid, progress and development. To hasten Ortega’s defeat, Ronald Reagan sponsored counter-revolutionary killers to terrorize the population, destabilize the country’s economy to create havoc and misery and was condemned by the international Criminal Court for illegally mining the Nicaragua’s ports.
    The Sandinistas were forced out of office, but the promised changes, progress and development never materialized. In fact, under the tutelage and direction of the Americans, the economy remained stuck in reverse. Last week, just as Ortega was voted as President again, the United Nations disclosed that Nicaragua rivaled Haiti as the poorest country in the Western world. To be sure in Nicaragua as in Haiti, or SVG, a tiny elite continues to get rich while the majority of the people get poorer.


    American empty promises are now legendary. Surprising though is that leaders continue to rely on its word when experience teaches otherwise. From 1972 to 1980, Michael Manley’s People’s National Party ruled Jamaica and tried to institute people-oriented policies. Apart from relations with Cuba, the most radical measure of the Manley government was to impose a 2 percent bauxite levy. Washington was incensed. It used the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to destroy the Jamaican economy. The CIA recruited and armed criminal elements to terrorize the people.


    The random killings witnessed in Jamaica today had their genesis in the CIA sponsored thuggery of that period. The IMF, which became known as the death trap, played havoc with the Jamaican economy. As Henry Kissinger said in another context, the intent was to ‘make the economy scream.’ And scream it did. Between 1972 and 1980, the economy almost collapsed. Thousands of Jamaicans were murdered, and thousands more were forced to flee from their country.


    But Jamaicans, as Nicaraguans 10 years later, were told not to worry. Seaga, America’s man in Kingston, was the economic wizard who will turn the country around. Today, Seaga has retired from politics, a tamer Manley was returned to office and has since died; yet Jamaica remains in a mess. The story is the same, whether we are speaking of Chile, Grenada, Iraq, Mozambique, Pakistan or Russia.


    Who should be blamed for the sad state of the economy around the world? Who should take credit for this colossal failure? Some may want to shelter from blame those who purport to rule the world. Not so this column; we lay complete blame for the stagnation on the system of capitalism and its imperial rulers. Just as Bill Clinton said, ‘it’s the economy stupid’ when asked to locate the problem in America, we see the problem in the world economy as one of systemic failure. We challenge anyone to contradict this conclusion. We say further that economic stagnation, underdevelopment and poverty will continue as long as the leaders continue to place the profits of a few over the needs and desires of the majority of people.


    There are no success stories to talk about after centuries of capitalist rule. To be sure, there is a lot of money in the system, but the majority of the people does not benefit from this abundance of wealth. In the United States, wages and income, when adjusted for inflation are lower now than they were in 1970. While the US asks other countries to watch their debt to credit ratio, the United States has become the biggest debtor nation in the world. The combined credit card debt of the people of the United States is more than the country’s gross domestic product of $8 trillion. Remove the credit and the system collapses.


    India is now touted as a major emerging capitalist market. In fact, 5 of the 12 new billionaires announced by Forbes business magazine last year are Indians. However, in Mumbai, India’s capital city of 7 million people, 70 percent of the people make do without toilet facilities and clean drinking water. And people are asked to celebrate this?
    Against this background, it becomes easier to understand why more and more voters are staking their hopes on those persons and forces, conservatives told us, were destined for the dustbin of history. Evo Morales’ Party for Socialism won overwhelmingly in Bolivia, Lula Da silva easily won a second term in Brazil and Chavez is favoured to win again in Venezuela. It could have been worse, but George Bush and Vincente Fox conspired to rob the leftist opposition leader, Lopez Abrador, of a victory in Mexico.
    This is why we ask people to pay close attention. What you don’t know can kill you. In the last weeks of the electoral campaign in Nicaragua, the American government was up to its same old tricks. Its ambassador warned of reduced funding and disaster if Nicaraguans rejected its dictates and voted for Ortega who is now less radical and more reformist.. But Nicaraguans remembered the empty promises made before the1990 vote. They went to the polls chanting ‘fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, the shame is on me.’ Our people must learn from these lessons.

  2. #2
    xtremeintl.com Mystic Xtremist's Avatar Mystic Xtremist is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by VINCYPOWA View Post
    ...economic stagnation, underdevelopment and poverty will continue as long as the leaders continue to place the profits of a few over the needs and desires of the majority of people.
    ....
    There are no success stories to talk about after centuries of capitalist rule. To be sure, there is a lot of money in the system, but the majority of the people does not benefit from this abundance of wealth. In the United States, wages and income, when adjusted for inflation are lower now than they were in 1970....
    I bet the bolded fact given here would come as a shock a whole lot of people.

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    Registered User trinidarkie is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Xtremist View Post
    I bet the bolded fact given here would come as a shock a whole lot of people.
    Who wrote this article and in what publication because that fact alone is very misleading if not outright wrong because:

    1) Wages today are higher than they were in 1970
    2) The US experienced some of its worst inflation in the 70's. Inflation today is significantly less.

    Economically not too sure how the author could come to that conclusion.
    Last edited by trinidarkie; 11-24-2006 at 05:51 PM.

  4. #4
    renegade
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    Quote Originally Posted by trinidarkie View Post
    Economically not too sure how the author could come to that conclusion.
    Because the author has no interest in fairness.
    That little tidbit in fact is a strawman.

  5. #5
    renegade
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    The article is filled with strawmen btw.

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    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by renegade View Post
    The article is filled with strawmen btw.
    Point out these STRAWMEN since the article is FILLED with it.

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    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by trinidarkie View Post
    Who wrote this article and in what publication because that fact alone is very misleading if not outright wrong because:

    1) Wages today are higher than they were in 1970
    2) The US experienced some of its worst inflation in the 70's. Inflation today is significantly less.

    Economically not too sure how the author could come to that conclusion.
    Totally BASELESS until you can PROVE OTHERWISE.

    Do you have the FIGURES and MATH to SUPPORT your CLAIM?

  8. #8
    renegade
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    Quote Originally Posted by VINCYPOWA View Post
    Point out these STRAWMEN since the article is FILLED with it.
    I assume you're a grown man, I'm not going to waste my time arguing with grown people who can't think critically.
    You can read can't you?
    Then you can spot them, and if you can't well thats horrible but not surprising.

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    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by renegade View Post
    I assume you're a grown man, I'm not going to waste my time arguing with grown people who can't think critically.
    You can read can't you?
    Then you can spot them, and if you can't well thats horrible but not surprising.
    IN OTHER WORDS, you're UNABLE to POINT OUT these STRAWMEN.

    I SEE.

  10. #10
    renegade
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    Quote Originally Posted by VINCYPOWA View Post
    IN OTHER WORDS, you're UNABLE to POINT OUT these STRAWMEN.

    I SEE.
    Yeah, that's it.

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    Registered Member VINCYPOWA's Avatar VINCYPOWA is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by renegade View Post
    Yeah, that's it.
    I KNOW.

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    xtremeintl.com Mystic Xtremist's Avatar Mystic Xtremist is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by trinidarkie View Post
    Who wrote this article and in what publication because that fact alone is very misleading if not outright wrong because:

    1) Wages today are higher than they were in 1970
    2) The US experienced some of its worst inflation in the 70's. Inflation today is significantly less.

    Economically not too sure how the author could come to that conclusion.
    Simply put, you are dead wrong and very misinformed.

    The article is talking about inflation-adjusted wages; are you sure that's what you were referring to? Because if you were, you would not have tried to separate the terms (your 1. and 2.).

    Adjusting wages for inflation has absolutely nothing to do with whether the inflation is good or bad. It is the only way you can compare REAL wages from year to year over time, because raw wage numbers will tell you absolutely nothing.

    For a simplistic example, making $10 in 1955 is worth a helluva lot more than making $20 in 2006.

    Now, moving onto inflation-adjusted wages:

    According to the Chicago Sun-Times, "Inflation-adjusted median wages today have fallen back to 1967 levels, according to Department of Labor statistics."

    Also, When adjusted for inflation, the minimum wage is at its lowest points in the past 50 years

    Here are Minimum wage rates over the past 50 years.

    When I find the median or average wages adjusted for inflation for the past 50 years I'll post it, but that's enuff to chew on for now.

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    xtremeintl.com Mystic Xtremist's Avatar Mystic Xtremist is offline
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    Here's an article from The Monthly Review (a 50+ year old economics periodical) written by economics professor and associate editor Michael Yates, which makes many of the same points as the article Powa posted.

    Specifically:
    Which gets us back to inequality. Anyone willing to look can see that a society in which wealth ownership is extraordinarily unequal, as it is in every capitalist country, must by its very nature also be one in which incomes are also unequal. And anyone with any connection at all to reality knows that those with the lion’s share of the wealth (and income) call the shots in everything that matters — politics and culture to name just two — and this power puts still more money into their hands. It also follows, as the night follows the day, that there can be no such thing as equal opportunity in a hopelessly inegalitarian society. Just perform a thought experiment. Imagine two child, one born into the poorest family in the United States and one born into the richest. Imagine further that all necessities, indeed all useful things, must be purchased in the marketplace. The results of such an untrammeled capitalism, just the kind Feldstein prescribes, are easy to predict. If the poor child is lucky enough to survive, he or she will assuredly have close to a zero opportunity to rise to the top. The rich child, on the other hand, can be completely incompetent but will never fall to the bottom or anywhere close to it.

    If we add to the inherent law of capitalist inequality policies designed by the wealthy to make them richer, inequality will worsen as it has in the United States. As the Economic Policy Institute and many other scholars have shown with meticulous and uncooked research, the employer-led and government-abetted attack on labor unions, the class nature of the schools, the implementation of job-destroying and income-reducing trade policies, the stagnant minimum wage, all have contributed to growing inequality. Not to mention racism and sexism. Yet Feldstein and his ilk profess incomprehension. Or, worse yet, they blame the victims. They say that teenage pregnancy is a primary cause of poverty. In intellectual desperation, they even say that “low cognitive ability” is the culprit. Not only is this bankrupt, but given the racial composition of those at the bottom of our society, it is racist (as is Feldstein’s equation of Wall Street operators and basketball players).
    Read on: http://www.monthlyreview.org/nftae02.htm

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    Registered User trinidarkie is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Xtremist View Post
    Simply put, you are dead wrong and very misinformed.

    The article is talking about inflation-adjusted wages; are you sure that's what you were referring to? Because if you were, you would not have tried to separate the terms (your 1. and 2.).

    Adjusting wages for inflation has absolutely nothing to do with whether the inflation is good or bad. It is the only way you can compare REAL wages from year to year over time, because raw wage numbers will tell you absolutely nothing.

    For a simplistic example, making $10 in 1955 is worth a helluva lot more than making $20 in 2006.

    Now, moving onto inflation-adjusted wages:

    According to the Chicago Sun-Times, "Inflation-adjusted median wages today have fallen back to 1967 levels, according to Department of Labor statistics."

    Also, When adjusted for inflation, the minimum wage is at its lowest points in the past 50 years

    Here are Minimum wage rates over the past 50 years.

    When I find the median or average wages adjusted for inflation for the past 50 years I'll post it, but that's enuff to chew on for now.
    You are saying exactly the same thing I said but in one sentence...read both my comment and yours and you would see that it is the same thing which is that wages have to be adjusted for inflation. In one sentence or two it all means the same thing. I ent get where yuh gong with that good and bad inflation thing but whatever...moving on.

    You are arguing a point that the author of the article has not made. Yes the minimum wage has not been adjusted in line with inflation for quite a few years however it is not the claim the author is making. He is saying that wages today are less than wages in 1970 which I do not believe is true.

    You are welcome is post the median wages rates which will indeed prove the author and your point but until then the articles you have posted does nothing to prove his claim.

  15. #15
    Registered User trinidarkie is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mystic Xtremist View Post
    Here's an article from The Monthly Review (a 50+ year old economics periodical) written by economics professor and associate editor Michael Yates, which makes many of the same points as the article Powa posted.

    Specifically:


    Read on: http://www.monthlyreview.org/nftae02.htm

    I am not disproving the ills of captialism in the least, there are ills as there are with socialism. What people sometimes fail to realize is that these were theoretical states. The execution of such is entirely different. Look at any two socialist economies and you would see that there are as many divergences as there are similiarities for countries that supposedly hold the same belief. The same for capitalism.

    As Renegade pointed out the author has made some claims that are questionable. May be for the shock factor, I do not know .

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