The subject title says it all. To listen to some GOP'ers talk, you'd think socialism was Communism.

Tags: Communism, socialism

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Tom, has your experience made you an institutionalist or behaviourist? 

Arcus, I don't use such words.

"Such words"?

That's right; I don't use words that conceal so much and often result in endless equivocation because even dictionaries differ.

An aside:

A behaviorist gets on an elevator at the ground floor. On the third floor, a colleague who happens also to be a behaviorist gets on. The first behaviorist turns to the second behaviorist and says, "You're fine. How am I?"

I've been doing politics for forty years, some of it best described as hardball (or economics-in-action) in which politicians contact employers of activists and these activists find themselves suddenly unemployed. In a more extreme case, an Arizona newspaper I knew was killed by a bomb placed under his car because he was reporting on political corruption. I have yet to see evidence that democratic nations go to war as quickly as top-down forms of government.

Are you proud of putting people out of work as punishment for their politics? As for the car bomb case, you've got to be kidding to imply that somehow that was done as a result of some political policy, which is what you are implying. Most likely it was a desperate act by some individual fearful of his/her misdeeds being discovered.

So...I'm wondering what the point was that you thought you were making. 

But of course, I don't have 40 years of hardball politics behind me, some of it involving ethically questionable actions like the one you described.

Unseen, you drew a wrong conclusion.

I wasn't putting people out of work. I'm the only one of seven activists who survived attempt on our employment. I survived because ,my immediate manager at Honeywell botched the job so badly that I had grounds for a lawsuit. The lawyer I spoke with told me to call him if Honeywell lets me go. I contrived to let Honeywell management know and they suddenly started treating me well. A Congressman wrote me an apology for the attempt on my job by another Congressman.

The car bombing resulted in a trial that sent the bomber to prison for years. It was all over the Arizona newspapers and even some national newspapers.

Google Don Bolles for part of the story. The mafia connection is wrong; a county attorney said country club people were involved in the reporter's murder. I have relevant newspaper stories.

The way you wrote it up made it appear you were on giving end of the putting people out of work thing, or at least made it possible to read it that way.

As for the car bombing, individual people were responsible for it. It wasn't the policy of an oppressive government.

I understand your words as saying you want you to decide for everyone.

Then you misunderstand me perfectly.  What I want is for people to be in charge of their own lives, rather than letting society assume control, or for that matter letting me assume control--as you seem to be accusing me of wanting to do.  But that does require people to take responsibility for their own lives as well.

Thank you far clarifying the point.

For people to be in charge of their own lives and still live in society requires they take responsibility but it also requires voting, which your post told me you oppose.

Have you heard it said that voting results in everyone's getting what only the majority deserve? Welcome to ambiguity.

I don't oppose voting, I oppose unlimited democracy.  There's the old adage about democracy being two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for dinner.

I do see many make a fetish of democracy though.  The people voted for it, so it must be right.  OR, give the people a vote and they will manage to control corrupt politicians, or keep a state from running rampant, or somehow come up with something satisfactory.  OR we must replace system X with a democracy.

Alas I think history has demonstrated the opposite, democracy is not a be-all, end-all, especially when not constrained, but also not even when it is limited. As soon as people figure out how they can use the government to raid other peoples' pocketbooks, the system starts on a downward slide. Or a demagogue will get elected and seize all power.  That, in fact is precisely what happened with Hitler.

I don't know whether you realize this or not, but in your post I originally responded to, you spouted Marxist theory quite well (were you aware of where it came from?).  Asserting that socialism was basically equivalent to democracy, and that (somehow) if people democratically elected a government and that government controlled the economy, it would work wonderfully.  And that a government responsible for the daily workings of the economy would still (somehow) eventually wither away, even though it has a tremendous amount of work to do making all of the economic decisions (billions every day!) in a society.

SteveInCO, with terms like unlimited democracy, fetish, must be right, be-all end-all, work wonderfully, raid other peoples' pocketbooks, you've built an impenetrable wall around your position. Your adage could have been about two sheep and one wolf. I'm sorry that you feel a need for so much protection; you've told readers more about your past than about your present.

When you can accept that death is the only be-all, end-all we descendants of cyanobacteria have, your need for such protection will wither away.

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