Capital! (Destiny)

by narcogen ⌂ @, Andover, Massachusetts, Thursday, November 07, 2019, 09:28 (1622 days ago) @ cheapLEY

Just… fix those bad aspects. Crazy right?!

That’s what I mean by regulation. One side of our political spectrum is seemingly on a quest to get as rich as possible at all costs and fuck everything else.

It's so strange that in the system that said it was good for people to want to be as rich as possible, and then praised the people who did that, then used their money to seize political power to make sure you could not regulate their ability to continue to increase their wealth.

Cody's suggestion about regulation is about 30-40 years too late. It's a centrist argument from the pre-Nixon, pre-Reagan era, that assumes there's still enough shared assumptions and values between stakeholders to forge an agreement about what the rules of the game are supposed to be, when there's a "side" that has basically said there is no acceptable rule or oversight ever for a long, long time.

I don’t want pure socialism. I want what a bunch of idiots clutch their pearls over and label socialism to fear-monger their idiot
base into voting for stupid policies that only make the rich richer at any cost.

Very much this.

Although again the "I don't want socialism but" is a reaction to exactly the sort of pearl-clutching that's been going on for 40 years. It's a necessary prelude that gets in the way of any honest discussion, much like "well I'm not a feminist BUT... how about equal rights for women?" People are required to carve out what they think are the elements of a position that everyone agrees are beyond the pale before having a discussion, and we ought to stop doing it.

Medicare for all, abolishing the ridiculousness that has become predatory student loans, much stronger unions in nearly every industry, much higher taxes on the extremely wealthy to provide services to the people the rich constantly exploit.

Capitalism is great, the crony capitalism that is current rampant in this country is not.

Just want to mention something here.

When most people say "capitalism" what they really mean is a regulated free market. That can and is a component to capitalism, but it's not what capitalism is.

Capitalism is about the primacy of, well.. capital. It says that in the process that involves having an idea, making a product, getthing that product to market, and consuming that product, the single most essential element is capital. Capital gets paid first. Capital gets paid most. Capital gets paid forever.

In return for taking on the initial risk-- putting up the money before people know a product is viable-- capital gets to rent seek into eternity. Because venture and equity capital takes on the task commercial banking was supposed to do, because banking decided to focus first on speculation and then on fees. And the legal framework puts almost no limits on the kind of agreement capital can strike in those initial situations-- and in public markets, which were supposed to be the end-game for shares of big successful companies, where the entire populace can invest and participate, we've witnessed the clawing back of control into the hands of private equity, who consolidate or dismantle entities for short term profit, leading to less transparency and less competition. You know, the things that people really mean when they say "capitalism".

Capital overstates its initial risk as a matter of course and overpays itself, then uses the fruits of that overpayment to lobby into existence legislation that protects their right to continue to be paid first, most, and forever. That's what capitalism currently is.

We are absolutely experiencing the worst sort of "crony capitalism" currently, as classically understood by that term, but that should not distract us from the fundamental structural changes that probably need to be made if we care about the quality of life of the average citizen.

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