Follow

Hello! I am new here but have opinions about things. Ask me anything!

· · Web · 9 · 2 · 3

@smari Expropriation of all billionaires – yay or nay? :thinkhappy:

@phryk I used to think it was a good idea, but these days I'm with Kropotkin, specifically chapter 4 of The Conquest of Bread, wherein he argues convincingly that expropriation from the rich will never work as more than a temporary measure which would enrage the rich and powerful. Systemic change that makes it impossible to become rich in that way is a better approach.

@smari A much more solid answer than I expected. And of course it's no substitute for the abolition of capitalism. :)

@phryk Absolutely. These days I'd be happy enough if we could get it through people's heads that a) The law of aggregate demand ONLY works in a world with exactly one product, and is disproven for all other cases, b) Ricardian rents are always based on disproportionate power rather than real economic value, and c) Taxes do not pay for state spending; state spending creates money and taxation moderates the money supply. If we could get even one of these to be commonly accepted, we'd be winning.

@smari I'm not sure that'd be enough, still perception of these issues seems to be slowly shifting towards a more lefty position and I imagine that's not going to slow down as more and more people are living ever more precariously.

What frightens me more are the modern systems of control.

Sometimes I fear it's already too late for any meaningful opposition with ubiquitous automated mass surveillance and ever more militarized enforcement… :/

@phryk It isn't enough. But if we can't get the basics fixed, we won't get anything fixed.

@smari What exactly do you mean by "the basics"? Basic understanding or the material basis of a society?

@phryk since you mention it, both. But I meant basic understanding. Also, I'll say that although I'm a mutualist in most ways, I tend to think of most "pure" brands of political though as somewhere on the scale from naive to misanthropic. Reality is complicated.

@smari Aye, closest thing to an ideology I subscribe to is anarchism without adjectives, for two reasons:

1) We have very little actual data on what specific forms of alternative political systems are viable, especially in the long run.

2) At different times in different locations different things will work for different groups.

Coincidentally, I think the biggest internal problem of leftist circles nowadays is dogma – it calcifies thought patterns and stymies adaptation to new circumstances.

@phryk agreed. Also, anarchists are too often enamored with deeply antisocial behavior patterns, and assume that whatever most people do must automatically be wrong.

@smari Not sure about that. I think locally most of the problematic people I met were communists/socialists, but anarchists seem to be a minority here…

That said being very wary of dogma, many/most things that virtually everyone does are at least suspect to me. :P

@smari @phryk
Interesting thread!

Do you want to elaborate on these 3 points? Or point me to further reading?

I already searched for the "law of aggregate demand" but couldn't really find it. I had to read up on Ricardian rent, I think I understand what you are saying, I don't really see how this plays out for knowledge work, how does it apply there? And if taxation wasn't necessary surely one of the worlds countries would have showed that by now then right?

@kingannoy @phryk So...
1) Law of aggregate demand is explained well and debunked in Steve Keen's "Debunking Economics". See also: debtdeflation.com/blogs/2011/1
... short version of the law is that "people want more of X when the price of X falls" ─ which is only true in certain edge cases and can be proven to not apply generally or under any simple set of conditions, except in the case where there is only one item in the entire makret.

@kingannoy @phryk 2) Ricardian rent applies mostly to "natural monopolies"; but for knowledge workers see Benjamin Tucker's discussion (or Kevin Carlson's) about "the big four" monopolies (land, money, tariffs and patents in his formulation), which includes other forms of intellectual monopolies such as copy rights in practice.

@kingannoy @phryk 3) I didn't say taxation isn't necessary, just that it doesn't do what most people say it does. Specifically, there is no such thing as the government "spending taxpayer dollars". The implications of this "flipping" of the model are massive. For one, governments can spend literally as much as they want to as long as they can (through taxes, securitization, or whatever) keep inflation in check. And this makes sense: the only *real* limitation is the productive capacity.

@kingannoy @phryk ─ which is to say, the real limit is not "how much money do we have in circulation", because that's something the government actually decides. The real limit is "how much additional work can be performed given the workforce, machinery, etc available in the country". Implications: Full employment is a policy decision. Tax distribution is purely political. School, hospital, etc quality is a pure political decision. And if they're not top notch, somebody decided that.

@cecilevillemin Try LSD? If that doesn't work... I dunno. Acid is probably the closest thing to an answer.

@smari most important thing first : pineapple on pizza, yes or no?

@musicmatze Absolutely not. It is absolutely fucking haram. Do not. Not even once.

@smari Can you mend your clothes when needed? For example, replace a zip, a button or patch something.

@QueenMollyBones yes. I've fixed a few of my clothes, but am missing a thread and needle right now to fix a problem with my jacket I'm hoping nobody will notice. 🙂

@AstaMcCarthy oh hello! So, I happen to know that Twitter *had* a protocol internally for federation back in the day, that never got published or used and was eventually killed. I don't know if they lost it, but they appear to be duplicating effort. However, if they're being sincere about this, it might be a very positive step forward.

@smari Tag your toots.. and make an introduction tag. Also try to get over 100 to follow or your feed will be boring.

This is a good place to start. communitywiki.org/trunk

@shellkr I have just under 10000 followers on Twitter, so I don't really need more "excitement". I'll follow friends and interesting people.

@smari I find interesting people through other I follow. ;)

I then I put interesting people in a list(feed). I have 5 pinned feed columns where one is my list. This makes it easier for me to not miss anything.

@mansr DS9. Also B5. But if it must be TOS or TNG, then TNG.

@mansr nah. Cool character, cool concept, so much potential simply squandered.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Mastodon

Server run by the main developers of the project 🐘 It is not focused on any particular niche interest - everyone is welcome as long as you follow our code of conduct!