This page might grow into something someday, but odds are it won't.
I went to my mother and told her I intended to commence a different life.
I asked for and obtained her blessing and at once commenced the career of a
-- Tiburcio Vasquez
Isn't it strange that the same people that laugh at gypsy
fortune tellers take economists seriously?
Never get angry. Never make a threat.
Reason with people.
-- Don Corleone, "the Godfather"
Perhaps you're asking yourself, "What exactly is the difference
between capitalism and communism?" Perhaps not.
In any case, it's really quite simple.
Under capitalism, man exploits his fellow man.
Under communism, the opposite is true.
from "Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar ..."
Left or Right?
Political discussions are full of words and terms that are scarcely understood by
most of those who bandy them about. Left and Right are certainly key among them,
and though most people feel they have a grasp of what they mean, it is a rare individual
who can give a cogent definition.
Left People "on the left" tend to seek social justice by some kind of redistribution
of wealth enforced by the state. This tends towards a welfare state and socialism
(socialism being defined as a system that avoids personal property).
Right People "on the right" tend to favor capitalism and private property, at least at
this point in time. Remember that these terms originated during the French revolution when
people on the right supported the monarchy, and those on the left were eager to limit the
kings power and authority.
How did this guy get to be president?
Questions about his birth certificate have never been laid to rest, and it would
seem that neither party is all that concerned.
Sometime in 2011 a birth certificate was produced, but on examination it seems
to be a forged photoshop effort.
Sheriff Arapaio of Maricopa County, Arizona did an investigation and produced a
10 page report in March of 2012
(see this Washington Times article).
Although foreign newspapers (including Pravda in Russia) publicized this information,
the American media entirely ignored it.
I have heard, but not confirmed, that it was admitted that the birth certificate was a photoshop job.
Nobody seems to be concerned. Somebody should be.
By and large this word is now a meaningless label, hurled as an insult by a frustrated party
involved in some kind of political argument. It is worthwhile though, to dig beneath this to
discover what the label actually means (a person "on the left" typically uses this word to
attempt to vilify a person "on the right"). A fascist believes in a strong unified
national identity, and that such a society is best served by a strong totalitarian leadership.
A fascist belives that war and violence are good things that energize the state.
A simple view is that fascism is an ultra-right position,
but there are good arguments that fascism is a unique phenomenon that
should not be classified in the left-right scheme at all.
Socialists generally oppose capitalism, claiming that it unfairly concentrates power and wealth
among an "elite" group. Lenin called socialism a transitional stage between capitalism and
communism. In essence, it would seem that socialism is a reaction to perceived injustices
produced by capitalism. The aim in socialism is to reward labor and "merit".
Strangely though, socialism tends to produce a welfare state, rewarding sloth and incompetence.
Every ardent socialist ought to read the book,
"The Road to Serfdom" by F. A. Hayek.
He presents convincing arguments that socialism
(or "planning" as it is often labelled) necessarily leads
to a totalitarian regime. He observed this process first-hand
in Europe in the 1930's, writing the book in the period 1940-1943,
giving it particular weight and authority.
Nazis and Commies
I have found it quite difficult to understand what these two groups believe.
Everyone (myself included) tends to go no deeper than to condemn them as totalitarian systems.
I have some notes on both naziism and communism.
I was surprised to learn that the nazis viewed the communists as their mortal enemies,
but maybe I wouldn't be if I understood either system.
"Rule of the few".
A form of government which is ruled by an elite group. Membership in the elite is determined
by royalty, wealth, or family ties.
"Rule by the wealthy". A specific form of Oligarchy. Pretty much the state of things in the
United States these days, when campaign spending is strictly correlated with election results.
It is amazing how many people think that the system of government in
the United States is a democracy!
It is not, it is a republic.
Did you vote on whether to go to war with Iraq?
How about Vietnam? Health Reform?
Have any comments? Questions?
Drop me a line!
Tom's home page / firstname.lastname@example.org