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Banzai

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I wish I had more time to detail it all down without replying in kind and not resorting to wordplay answers like "Pre-WW2, yes death squads.". So, a few sad pre-WW2 examples, all involving "death squads", most during the Lenin's reign:

Execution of the tzar family incl. children and servants in 1918 by a death squad without any trial, as ordered directly by Lenin.

The Red Terror in 1917-1922 with at least 100,000-200,000 dead, a lot of them executed by Cheka death squads etc.

Creation of the Hungarian Soviet Republic as orchestrated by Lenin, and the terror groups (= death squads) like “Lenin Boys” executing “counter-revolutionaries” without trial.

Tambov Rebellion during 1920–1921 with approx. 15,000 shot in the aftermath of the uprising, without trials, by death squads.

Lenin’s now famous 1918 telegrams to publicly execute (no trials, so death squads) Mensheviks, peasants and others in Nizhny Novgorod and peasants in Penza and other such terror tactics.

Red Army raids on (not only) anarchists in Ukraine 1918-1920 incl. mass executions (by death squads).

Kronstadt rebellion in 1921 (lead by socialists calling for “free elections to soviets and an end to food requisitioning”) with most rebels either mass executed by death squads or sent to concentration camps afterwards.

St. Nedelya church terror attack in 1925 Bulgaria as directed by Soviet military intelligence officers with approx. 200 dead.

NKVD murders during Spanish Civil War (incl. A. Nin, M. Rein, and J. Robles, all socialists opposing the Soviets), NKVD-orchestrated mass executions of soldiers, civilians and priests during the Siege of Madrid (see Paracuellos massacres) with purposeful downing of the Red Cross aircraft by Soviet pilots to prevent the RC envoy delivering a report of the massacre. Death squads.

The famines in 1921-22 (not only natural causes but food requisitioning, export of grain abroad) and 1932-1933 in Ukraine (direct result of collectivization policies, some even say purposeful genocide by Stalin) etc. with millions dead. One can go on and on.
Pre-WW2 the entire world was either invading or being invaded. 100's of millions of dead. No-one pretending they're civilized. Why not mention Finland siding with Nazi's and laying siege to Leningrad? 1 million dead. How about the 1943 Bengal famine caused by the UK? 3 million dead. Famines and UK again in 1910's Iran? 10 million dead. "One can go on and on" with examples of supposed democracies killing millions.

After WW2 there was a new world order. UN Charter. Countries pretending they're civilized and no longer invading each other because they might get nuked in return. Colonies dismantled.

1970's-1980's. Death squads. Democracy destroying democracies.

Again, you are mixing social welfare (a normal part of modern democtratic capitalist states, welfare states) with socialism which (mostly) strives for "collective ownership of the means of production", i.e. large-scale collectivization.
Again, you're trying to pass off welfare as if it came about because capitalists cared about the wellbeing of their citizens. In every case I know of, welfare policies were created by socialists in power, or by fear of socialists gaining power.

Everything bad = socialism, everything good = capitalism, is dishonest and lazy. Doctrines and ideologies evolve. Socialism isn't a religion.

Even ancient Rome had public roads. And even fixed prices on food for the poor (a populist move, later even surpassed by the free grain policy of Claudius, much later this also inlcuded salt, oil and meat). Together with slave labor and excessive taxation one of the factors that contributed to the fall of Rome.
Ancient Rome had socialists? They had religious people too. Just because someone puts a name on something doesn't mean the ideology or practices are new.

In a true capitalist society all roads would be private. Poor people wouldn't be able to afford non-subsidised dairy or wheat. They already can't afford fruit and vegetables.

Social security on a large scale was implemented by Imperial Germany under Bismarck's (definitely a right-wing politician) government in 1889.
He did that out of fear of socialist parties taking control. See above. Would he have done it without the pressure of socialism?

Social welfare is provided from tax revenues, with state ownership of roads, schools etc. I won't react on your comment re:democracy, the benefits are obvious. Capitalism is not in opposition to sustainable social welfare.
The state belongs to the people.

You don't need to react, since everyone knows people die in the US because they can't afford healthcare. US is an example of a democratic country that doesn't care about its own people. Cares a lot about corporate welfare, but not people.

Where do you live now?
 

scott2000

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since everyone knows people die in the US because they can't afford healthcare.
Interesting. Never thought about this too much. Looks like one study from 2009 showed about 45000 died in US from lack of healthcare ... I couldn't find what the numbers are for today yet.

That's about 1/10th of how many die from smoking every year here....
 

Dark1

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Pre-WW2 the entire world was either invading or being invaded. 100's of millions of dead. No-one pretending they're civilized. Why not mention Finland siding with Nazi's and laying siege to Leningrad? 1 million dead. How about the 1943 Bengal famine caused by the UK? 3 million dead. Famines and UK again in 1910's Iran? 10 million dead. "One can go on and on" with examples of supposed democracies killing millions.

After WW2 there was a new world order. UN Charter. Countries pretending they're civilized and no longer invading each other because they might get nuked in return. Colonies dismantled.

Finland: It began with a Soviet invasion of Finland in late 1939. Thus, for both Soviet-Finnish wars, Soviet Union is to blame as an initial aggressor. Since Western powers mostly closed their eyes to all Soviet aggressions preceding and at the beginning of WW2 (the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, and the following invasion of Poland together with Nazi Germany; the subsequent Katyn massacre with mass executions of 22,000+ ppl.; Soviet occupation of the Baltics; Soviet occupation of Bessarabia and Bukovina etc.), anyone can hardly blame Finland siding with Germany later, after having to cede over 10 % of its territory to the USSR after the first Soviet-Finnish war.

Bengal Famine: It happened during WW2, and yes, the British India goverment was partially to blame as well as Churchill's war cabinet - for not providing the food relief soon enough (later they did incl. the help of a full infantry division, R.A.F. supply planes etc.), but so were the war-time circumstances surrounding it. But in essence, it was a war-famine, and a large part of the blame for the famine lays on Imperial Japan of the time. Yet there is no denying British war-time mismanagement of the war efforts against Imperial Japan in India played a part. The famine would have been well manageable in peacetime. Also, I would not call British India goverment a democracy, but lets not delve into that further. Famines are less likely in democracies due to free press, electoral accountability, and other factors. Yet, compare this with the conclusion of the Holodomore in Ukraine, where the Soviets concentrated on propaganda efforts denying it ever happened (even with help from G. B. Shaw and other Western socialists).

Persian Famine: Also a war-time famine, during WW1. I know little of the subject, but if we are to believe the Wiki (Persian famine of 1917–1919 - Wikipedia), under Causes etc., the British and Russian armies present due to the war efforts (Ottomans vs. Russians etc.) may have worsened the famine, with poor administration of the local government, seasonal droughts, and "dislocation of trade and agricultural production caused by the war" playing also a major role. I will not be so heartless as to say "there were other famines in Persia before without foreign influence" as you have commented the famines in Lenin's Russia, but overlooking the World War I (not started by Britain) as a major contributing factor is a defect in your reasoning.

1970's-1980's. Death squads. Democracy destroying democracies.


Again, you're trying to pass off welfare as if it came about because capitalists cared about the wellbeing of their citizens. In every case I know of, welfare policies were created by socialists in power, or by fear of socialists gaining power.

Everything bad = socialism, everything good = capitalism, is dishonest and lazy. Doctrines and ideologies evolve. Socialism isn't a religion.

Ancient Rome had socialists? They had religious people too. Just because someone puts a name on something doesn't mean the ideology or practices are new.

Yes, modern capitalists do care about the wellbeing of the workers, not in the least because it also benefits their business. There is nothing dishonest in pointing out how all socialist countries in the past turned into tyrannies the minute they were created and practiced state capitalism (and communist-revolution-fueled neo-colonialism), while greatly oppressing the liberties of their citizens. The ancient Rome was merely a remark that social welfare is something that evolved over centuries, and is not merely an invention of modern thinkers. I am also not downplaying the great role of modern democratic socialist elements in a today's, largely free society, However, I do not view Marx and his subsequent followers in Soviet Union as being a part of them.

In a true capitalist society all roads would be private. Poor people wouldn't be able to afford non-subsidised dairy or wheat. They already can't afford fruit and vegetables.

I am talking about modern democratic capitalism, not you view of capitalism which seems to be approx. industrial revolution-capitalism, and also not state capitalism, as practiced by most socialists in the past and present (China). Democracy, capitalism (i.e. private ownership of the means of production), and modern welfare state in general, despite the deficiencies, is vastly superior to early forms of capitalism, modern forms of state capitalism (socialism) etc.

He did that out of fear of socialist parties taking control. See above. Would he have done it without the pressure of socialism?

He was more concerned to stimulate economic growth via social security for the workers (see above), taking the wind out of socialist sails was most likely just a secondary concern. (This is not to say he was a democtratic politician, quite the contrary in fact, but that is another matter).

The state belongs to the people.

No it doesn't, unfortunately. Although I am an advocate of democracy and modern democratic capitalism, I see the deficiencies as well, one being the diminishing of electoral accountability in our age (resulting in greater corruption, and subsequent division between the electorate and the state), and the rise of mega-corporations giving birth to the corporate socialism where the companies privatize profits and socialize losses. Together with growing extreme left-wing tendencies, this assymetry is the greatest threat to modern democratic societies, and subsequently our personal liberties (with corporations being able to effectivelly control the free speech rights without due process etc.).

You don't need to react, since everyone knows people die in the US because they can't afford healthcare. US is an example of a democratic country that doesn't care about its own people. Cares a lot about corporate welfare, but not people.

Where do you live now?

Yes, I agree that not having a universal healthcare system is something the US should think about. Yet: "58% of community hospitals in the United States are non-profit, 21% are government-owned, and 21% are for-profit. According to the [WHO], the United States spent $9,403 on health care per capita, and 17.9% on health care as percentage of its GDP in 2014. Healthcare coverage is provided through a combination of private health insurance and public health coverage (e.g., Medicare, Medicaid)." [Wiki]

According to the 2018 worldbank.org poll:

USA had healthcare expenditures in the amout of 16.89 % of its GDP in 2018
China had healthcare expenditures in the amout of 5.35 % of its GDP in 2018
Cuba 11.19 %
Venezuela, RB 3.56 %
European Union 9.85 %

Saying it "doesn't care about its own people" is not reflected in these numbers. It may say something about its effectivness, yes, as well as climbing obesity rate etc., but also the use of modern (expensive) technologies, high rate of preventive measures (screenings/vaccinations) etc. Does USA need a universal healthcare system (while also integrating the private healthcare system, not banning it of course)? Probably yes. But saying it is a "democratic country that doesn't care about its own people" is simply not true on many levels.
 

Banzai

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Finland: It began with a Soviet invasion of Finland in late 1939. Thus, for both Soviet-Finnish wars, Soviet Union is to blame as an initial aggressor. Since Western powers mostly closed their eyes to all Soviet aggressions preceding and at the beginning of WW2 (the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, and the following invasion of Poland together with Nazi Germany; the subsequent Katyn massacre with mass executions of 22,000+ ppl.; Soviet occupation of the Baltics; Soviet occupation of Bessarabia and Bukovina etc.), anyone can hardly blame Finland siding with Germany later, after having to cede over 10 % of its territory to the USSR after the first Soviet-Finnish war.
Should read "anyone can hardly blame Finland for siding with the Nazi's". It's also dishonest. They could have stayed out of it and not attacked.

They agreed to the ceding of territory as they knew their fate would change with the weather.

I will not be so heartless as to say "there were other famines in Persia before without foreign influence" as you have commented the famines in Lenin's Russia, but overlooking the World War I (not started by Britain) as a major contributing factor is a defect in your reasoning.
Never said anything about Russian famines, and overlooking WW1 and WW2 and the entire world massacring each other is the defect I'm pointing out in your reasoning. We're better off leaving this era out entirely.

Yes, modern capitalists do care about the wellbeing of the workers, not in the least because it also benefits their business. There is nothing dishonest in pointing out how all socialist countries in the past turned into tyrannies the minute they were created and practiced state capitalism (and communist-revolution-fueled neo-colonialism), while greatly oppressing the liberties of their citizens. The ancient Rome was merely a remark that social welfare is something that evolved over centuries, and is not merely an invention of modern thinkers. I am also not downplaying the great role of modern democratic socialist elements in a today's, largely free society, However, I do not view Marx and his subsequent followers in Soviet Union as being a part of them.
You were trying quite hard to avoid using the word socialism to describe anything to do with modern capitalist societies. Glad to see you're acknowledging its existence :)

I am talking about modern democratic capitalism, not you view of capitalism which seems to be approx. industrial revolution-capitalism, and also not state capitalism, as practiced by most socialists in the past and present (China). Democracy, capitalism (i.e. private ownership of the means of production), and modern welfare state in general, despite the deficiencies, is vastly superior to early forms of capitalism, modern forms of state capitalism (socialism) etc.
See above. "Democratic capitalism" exists because of socialists. You're also saying I'm doing the same thing as you: looking at socialism as a set of idea's that hasn't evolved or adapted at all. Or that can't evolve at all.

If we're doing that, then we're both wrong.

Yes, I agree that not having a universal healthcare system is something the US should think about. Yet: "58% of community hospitals in the United States are non-profit, 21% are government-owned, and 21% are for-profit. According to the [WHO], the United States spent $9,403 on health care per capita, and 17.9% on health care as percentage of its GDP in 2014. Healthcare coverage is provided through a combination of private health insurance and public health coverage (e.g., Medicare, Medicaid)." [Wiki]

According to the 2018 worldbank.org poll:

USA had healthcare expenditures in the amout of 16.89 % of its GDP in 2018
China had healthcare expenditures in the amout of 5.35 % of its GDP in 2018
Cuba 11.19 %
Venezuela, RB 3.56 %
European Union 9.85 %
That's horrible reasoning. The US spends more money on less and worse care, which is a result of crony capitalism. It's probably the only country in the world where the government passed a law banning itself from negotiating drug prices.

Building the same bridge for $1B instead of $100M isn't proof you've built a better bridge. Or even a good bridge.

Saying it "doesn't care about its own people" is not reflected in these numbers. It may say something about its effectivness, yes, as well as climbing obesity rate etc., but also the use of modern (expensive) technologies, high rate of preventive measures (screenings/vaccinations) etc. Does USA need a universal healthcare system (while also integrating the private healthcare system, not banning it of course)? Probably yes. But saying it is a "democratic country that doesn't care about its own people" is simply not true on many levels.
Unfortunately it is true. To add another layer, many Americans don't even seem to care about other Americans. Apparently the less developed a welfare state is, the more resistance to welfare policies the population shows. The amount of times I've read things like 'I'm in great health and take supplements, why should I pay for someone else who's fat and unhealthy?'

Have you ever seen anyone from a state with universal healthcare write anything similar? How about Europeans crowdfunding online to cover medical costs for their sick children?

US is capitalism for the people, socialism for the corporations. We could fill this entire forum with examples.
 

scott2000

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The amount of times I've read things like 'I'm in great health and take supplements, why should I pay for someone else who's fat and unhealthy?'
.
and.... "if they don't want to social distance, take a vaccine or wear a mask, refuse to care for them"

Definitely some messed up stuff to not be excited about... Hopefully things are getting better.
 

JohnRoberts

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I am pleased to see other people arguing with each other for a change. :cool:

I didn't read it all but recall the term "Finlandization" used to describe how the former Soviet Union wielded their influence over the nominally neutral weaker neighbor (Finland).

JR
 

Dark1

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Should read "anyone can hardly blame Finland for siding with the Nazi's". It's also dishonest. They could have stayed out of it and not attacked.

They agreed to the ceding of territory as they knew their fate would change with the weather

Refusing to acknowledge Finland as a victim of Soviet collonialism is honest? They were attacked, defending the invasion at enormous cost of lives, and in the end forced (as you say "they agreed") to cede a large part of their territory to the attacker.

Never said anything about Russian famines, and overlooking WW1 and WW2 and the entire world massacring each other is the defect I'm pointing out in your reasoning. We're better off leaving this era out entirely.

Red Terror etc. certainly did not happen during either war. The reign of terror in the Lenin's Soviet Union after the revolution is not justifiable by any means.

You were trying quite hard to avoid using the word socialism to describe anything to do with modern capitalist societies. Glad to see you're acknowledging its existence :)

I am talking about socialism as a state system (collectivism), not welfare. As I pointed out several times, public roads, healthcare insurance etc. are not it, they can co-exist in capitalism, and are always better implemented in capitalism than they were in socialist (state capitalist) states like Soviet Union. Moderate left has its place in modern democracies, as does moderate right and everywhere in between. Communism/Marxism/Fascism/National Socialism/etc. does not.

See above. "Democratic capitalism" exists because of socialists. You're also saying I'm doing the same thing as you: looking at socialism as a set of idea's that hasn't evolved or adapted at all. Or that can't evolve at all.

If we're doing that, then we're both wrong.


That's horrible reasoning. The US spends more money on less and worse care, which is a result of crony capitalism. It's probably the only country in the world where the government passed a law banning itself from negotiating drug prices.

Building the same bridge for $1B instead of $100M isn't proof you've built a better bridge. Or even a good bridge.

A gross generalization. Even pharmaceutical companies are driven by profit, yes, and development of new, innovative drugs costs enormous sums of money, where a return of investment is expected. Almost 90% of drugs prescribed in the USA are generics, with similarly low costs as elsewhere. Where is the line between free trade and good public healthcare, that is a topic of many endless debates (even Trump tried this Trump unveils controversial drug price rules in a last-ditch attempt to fulfill campaign promise). Is USAs healthcare system less effective than it should be? Maybe. But "not caring for its people" is a gross oversimplification.

Unfortunately it is true. To add another layer, many Americans don't even seem to care about other Americans. Apparently the less developed a welfare state is, the more resistance to welfare policies the population shows. The amount of times I've read things like 'I'm in great health and take supplements, why should I pay for someone else who's fat and unhealthy?'

Have you ever seen anyone from a state with universal healthcare write anything similar? How about Europeans crowdfunding online to cover medical costs for their sick children?

Yes, many times in Europe. The universal healthcare system is often abused from both the state side as well as patient's side (corruption, nepotism etc.), which results in unavailability of finances in the whole system, and unavailability of modern, expensive healthcare (-> crowdfunding etc.). The state collects enormous amounts of healthcare insurance money, and is often ineffective in its distribution and control.

US is capitalism for the people, socialism for the corporations. We could fill this entire forum with examples.

A gross generalization as well. But I am not denying some corporations are gaining privileges (over small businesses etc.) they should not have in a healthy democratic system, sometimes bordering on taking over the functions only a state structure should control.
 

Banzai

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Interesting. Never thought about this too much. Looks like one study from 2009 showed about 45000 died in US from lack of healthcare ... I couldn't find what the numbers are for today yet.

That's about 1/10th of how many die from smoking every year here....
Smoking is a choice. A child dying because their family can't afford care is a tragedy.

In Holland all children upto age 18 are automatically and fully insured by the state. If they can do it, so can the substantially richer US.

Refusing to acknowledge Finland as a victim of Soviet collonialism is honest? They were attacked, defending the invasion at enormous cost of lives, and in the end forced (as you say "they agreed") to cede a large part of their territory to the attacker.
Didn't refuse anything. Excusing a country for siding with the Nazi's is dishonest. Finland made a choice. Just like the Soviets made a choice in the first war.

Red Terror etc. certainly did not happen during either war. The reign of terror in the Lenin's Soviet Union after the revolution is not justifiable by any means.
No-one's justifying it. You'll just be hard pressed to find anyone caring for human life in an era of empires, colonisation, and useless wars.

I am talking about socialism as a state system (collectivism), not welfare. As I pointed out several times, public roads, healthcare insurance etc. are not it, they can co-exist in capitalism, and are always better implemented in capitalism than they were in socialist (state capitalist) states like Soviet Union. Moderate left has its place in modern democracies, as does moderate right and everywhere in between. Communism/Marxism/Fascism/National Socialism/etc. does not.
Going round in circles. Welfare is a socialist policy implemented in democracies, not capitalism. Welfare and capitalism can be successfully implemented in dictatorships too... Comes back to the beginning with mixed economies. Once you implement socialist policies, you're no longer a capitalist state.

The state owning anything is collectivism. Impossible without tax revenues in service based economies. Gulf states give free things to placate and stifle revolt – as all of it comes from oil/gas revenues, the people own nothing. But Holland and Sweden etc do it with taxpayer money.

gross generalization. Even pharmaceutical companies are driven by profit, yes, and development of new, innovative drugs costs enormous sums of money, where a return of investment is expected. Almost 90% of drugs prescribed in the USA are generics, with similarly low costs as elsewhere. Where is the line between free trade and good public healthcare, that is a topic of many endless debates (even Trump tried this Trump unveils controversial drug price rules in a last-ditch attempt to fulfill campaign promise). Is USAs healthcare system less effective than it should be? Maybe. But "not caring for its people" is a gross oversimplification.
This is demonstrably false.

- Majority of financing for pharma R&D comes from public programs funded by taxpayers
- All major US pharmaceutical companies spend more on advertising and marketing than they do on research
- Pharmaceuticals is one of the world's most profitable industries, operating in the US with no price controls, and still finds itself in an "innovation crisis". If all that profit doesn't make them innovate, then what's the point of the ridiculous prices?
- Generic drugs in the US are much more expensive than anywhere else because of collusion and encouraged price fixing ("profits are important, because innovation"). Collusion is with insurance companies, pharmacies, and each other.


Yes, many times in Europe. The universal healthcare system is often abused from both the state side as well as patient's side (corruption, nepotism etc.), which results in unavailability of finances in the whole system, and unavailability of modern, expensive healthcare (-> crowdfunding etc.). The state collects enormous amounts of healthcare insurance money, and is often ineffective in its distribution and control.
Can be ineffective, but no-one in Canada or Europe would be willing to trade healthplans with an American. Much worse before with pre-existing conditions and lifetime caps (which trump tried to bring back)
 
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squizo

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This is demonstrably false.

- Majority of financing for pharma R&D comes from public programs funded by taxpayers
- All major US pharmaceutical companies spend more on advertising and marketing than they do on research
- Pharmaceuticals is one of the world's most profitable industries, operating in the US with no price controls, and still finds itself in an "innovation crisis". If all that profit doesn't make them innovate, then what's the point of the ridiculous prices?
- Generic drugs in the US are much more expensive than anywhere else because of collusion and encouraged price fixing ("profits are important, because innovation"). Collusion is with insurance companies, pharmacies, and each other.

YEP
 

garp

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Finally this world comes to an end ... sooner than we thought. Human is a very bad animal and obviously learns no lesson. It is clearly exposed here.
 

Dualflip

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Finally this world comes to an end ... sooner than we thought. Human is a very bad animal and obviously learns no lesson. It is clearly exposed here.
I truly dislike the whole "human is a plague on the earth" argument, it belittles human life and leads to Nihilism which is one of the worst philosophies ever created. Not only that, it leads to a very empty life.
 
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