Glossary: Political Economies
I diverge from my regular, cheery farm-food-freedom road to define the different political systems some of us discuss so feverishly on social media. Basically, the difference between types of political economies is the name on the title. Following are the most popular choices: Communism, Corporatism, Fascism, Free Market and Socialism.
The rights of the group supersede the rights of the individual. This explains why so many individuals are imprisoned and/or die under these systems: individuals get in the way of the group, as in, for example, the drug war. Communism and fascism are two sides of the same collectivist coin.
Management (i.e., government) owns everything. According to The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx (@ right), communism has ten essential planks:
Abolition of Private Property
Heavy Progressive Income Tax
Abolition of Rights of Inheritance
Confiscation of Property Rights
Government Ownership of Communication and Transportation
Government Ownership of Factories and Agriculture
Government Control of Labor
Corporate Farms and Regional Planning
Government Control of Education
Who's happy: management, its employees. Who's not happy: everybody else. Who's in mortal danger: people who dare to oppose it.
A system of corporate privilege whereby corporations run management via campaign contributions. To keep the little people happy, everyone pretends that regulatory agencies are in place to protect consumers from corporations. In fact, corporations control said regulatory agencies by way of appointments to the agencies of former and "revolving door" corporate employees.
Case in point, Michael Taylor, head of the FDA's food division. Taylor is a revolving door employee of Monsanto: worked for Monsanto, then became Bush's head of the food division, went back to Monsanto, then became Obama's head of the food division where he is today.
Case in point, the WI judge who ruled that individuals don't have the right to eat or drink foods they believe will nourish them -- essentially ruling that our bodies are the property of the state, giving the state the right to decree what foods are safe to consume -- went to work for Monsanto a few weeks after making this ruling.
The rationale for allowing regulatory agencies to hire corporate insiders is that, Who would better know an industry than an employee? The result has been regulations crafted by industry insiders with the blessing of management. This is what Dr. Ron Paul is referring to when he coined the term, "Crony Capitalism": cronies making the rules.
These examples can be found in every administration, whether R or D, whether cabinet appointees, judges, diplomats, or regulatory boards.
Who's happy: politicians, corporate board members, corporate employees, beneficiaries of social services. Who's not happy: people who work to pay for it all. Who's in danger of losing their property (including freedom) and their lives: people who oppose it.*
Fascism or "Communism Dark"
The private owner's name is still on the title, but they cannot do anything at all without consulting management for permission. George Orwell suggested substituting the word "bully" for fascist. Fascists purge forces, ideas, people, and systems deemed to be the cause of decadence and degeneration. Fascist governments forbid and punish opposition and free speech.
Who's happy: management and some its direct employees. Who's not happy: everybody else. Who's in mortal danger: people who dare to oppose it.
Individual owner's names are on their individual titles. Rights inherent in ownership are protected by management. In a free market, unlike every other form of government, management works for the people rather than the other way around.
In a free market, prices are determined by supply and demand. Economic intervention and regulation by the state is limited to tax collection, and enforcement of private ownership and contracts. The state's role is to protect individual owners from fraud and force.
Who's happy: ambitious people who work. Who's not happy: lazy people who covet what others have. Who's in danger: thieves.
An essential element of a free market is honest money, i.e., redeemable, commodity money. We no longer have honest money in the U.S. and have not had since the creation of the Federal Reserve in 1913. More on that another day...
The rights of the individual supersede the rights of the group. The Constitution of the United States and the Bill of Rights are based on individualism: the rule of law rather than the rule of men. The free market is individualism at work.
Socialism or "Communism Lite"
"The People" is the name on the title. Not that they get to decide anything -- they still take orders from management. It's an economic system in which The People (read the state) owns or runs important industries.
Its stated goal is to have said industries make money and provide services which can be used for the benefit of the people. It's actual goal -- based on how it usually ends up -- is to centralize power by taking resources from the people who work and redistributing them to the people who vote.
Who's happy: the people who vote. Who's not happy: people who work hard. Who's in danger of losing their property (including freedom): people who dare to oppose it.
1. Which system would you choose to live under?
2. Which system do we live under now?
*A quickie list of people who harmed no one, but lost their lives and freedoms to the state: Jose Guerena. Pot smokers in jail because Big Pharma wants it illegal. Doctors who have lost their right to practice in the U.S. for saving lives with alternative therapies. Greg Caton: jailed for selling an herbal preparation that has never hurt anyone and that many claim has helped. OWS demonstrators who have been hurt, abused and killed by state employees. Anti-war demonstrators whose homes were raided and their property confiscated. The U.S. currently jails more of its citizens per capita than any other country in the world, even though we are the "free" country.