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05-03-2011, 10:50 PM   #1
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finally found the answer

Lately I have been really pondering why voters seem to be in a cycle of voting completely against 1)their own interest 2)their own philosophy.
Examples Senior citizens voting for people who would clearly remove their financial security and freedom,small gov.. let them be types voting for restrictive voter ID laws.....
SEEMS it was summed up nicely here:
QuoteQuote:
John Kenneth Galbraith
Main article: John Kenneth Galbraith
John K. Galbraith began his career as a high flying "new dealer", in the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt during the Great Depression. An interview from the early 1990s is here.

After the war, John Kenneth Galbraith (1908–2006) became one of the standard bearers for pro-active government and liberal-democrat politics. In The Affluent Society (1958), Galbraith argued voters reaching a certain material wealth begin to vote against the common good. He argued that the "conventional wisdom" of the conservative consensus was not enough to solve the problems of social inequality.[83] In an age of big business, he argued, it is unrealistic to think of markets of the classical kind. They set prices and use advertising to create artificial demand for their own products, distorting people's real preferences. Consumer preferences actually come to reflect those of corporations—a "dependence effect"—and the economy as a whole is geared to irrational goals.[84] In The New Industrial State Galbraith argued that economic decisions are planned by a private-bureaucracy, a technostructure of experts who manipulate marketing and public relations channels. This hierarchy is self serving, profits are no longer the prime motivator, and even managers are not in control. Because they are the new planners, corporations detest risk, require steady economic and stable markets. They recruit governments to serve their interests with fiscal and monetary policy, for instance adhering to monetarist policies which enrich money-lenders in the City through increases in interest rates. While the goals of an affluent society and complicit government serve the irrational technostructure, public space is simultaneously impoverished. Galbraith paints the picture of stepping from penthouse villas onto unpaved streets, from landscaped gardens to unkempt public parks. In Economics and the Public Purpose (1973) Galbraith advocates a "new socialism" as the solution, nationalizing military production and public services such as health care, introducing disciplined salary and price controls to reduce inequality.
History of economic thought - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
THey just lost touch with "conventional wisdom" and became complete Republican/Tea Party advertisement pawns
QuoteQuote:
Few can believe that suffering, especially by others, is in vain. Anything that is disagreeable must surely have beneficial economic effects.
John Kenneth Galbraith
John Kenneth Galbraith Quotes - BrainyQuote

I LOVE this one..........

QuoteQuote:
Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
John Kenneth Galbraith
bit more.......
http://economistsview.typepad.com/economistsview/2006/04/john_kenneth_ga.html


Last edited by jeffkrol; 05-03-2011 at 11:14 PM.
05-03-2011, 11:38 PM   #2
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Under any system "man exploits man" and the plutocrats rise to the top, unless something is done to prevent that.
05-04-2011, 01:10 AM   #3
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Jeff, have you ever read anything by Joe Bageant? His book 'Deer hunting with Jesus' deals with the specific issue of why some people vote against their own best interests.

I first heard of Joe when he was on a tour out here and was interviewed on local radio. My first thoughts were - "Finally! An American who makes sense!", (no offence meant .... )I actually sent him an email that day thanking him for his words (I had found his web site by then) and blow me down if he didn't have the good grace and manners to answer back. There I was at my local, beer in one hand, Joe Bageant on my blackberry in the other. Bliss!

We kept in sporadic contact and last year when he came to Melbourne again to launch his next (and last) book we met up for quite a wet and spirited dinner. Joe was a drinkin' man as well as a brilliant writer and self confessed socialist.

Unfortunately Joe died from cancer a couple of months ago, so his wisdom and vitriol no longer illuminates the dark corners of corporate insanity.

If you are interested, his work can be found at Joe Bageant
05-04-2011, 02:56 AM   #4
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"Ideas are inherently conservative. They yield not to the attack of other ideas but to the massive onslaughts of circumstances with which they cannot contend."

This one, from your links, is a rather pithy description of exactly what happened with the Hoover administration and eventually led to the hated New Deal of FDR.

Another thing I have always wondered about economically:

If it's true, as the right contends, that the ultimate source of all the nation's wealth comes from the private sector doesn't it follow then that the ultimate source of all power also lies within the private sector?

That is that under a through-going private capitalist system the so-called "government" is necessarily a mere subset of the private sector with no real power in it's own right? Isn't it logical, given this, that the only legitimate business of government is business?

Perhaps "mixed economies" are just a SOP to public opinion - things must change a little, such as the New Deal, so that they may remain the same.

05-04-2011, 06:51 AM   #5
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Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
"Ideas are inherently conservative. They yield not to the attack of other ideas but to the massive onslaughts of circumstances with which they cannot contend."

This one, from your links, is a rather pithy description of exactly what happened with the Hoover administration and eventually led to the hated New Deal of FDR.

Another thing I have always wondered about economically:

If it's true, as the right contends, that the ultimate source of all the nation's wealth comes from the private sector doesn't it follow then that the ultimate source of all power also lies within the private sector?

That is that under a through-going private capitalist system the so-called "government" is necessarily a mere subset of the private sector with no real power in it's own right? Isn't it logical, given this, that the only legitimate business of government is business?

Perhaps "mixed economies" are just a SOP to public opinion - things must change a little, such as the New Deal, so that they may remain the same.
Extrapolating down the ultimate power is in each individual..(the REAL private sector).
When we start "collectivizing" (business,guilds) then the ultimate individual power gets suppressed for the sake of a collective power with a vested interest in making itself the ultimate, though artificial, power (think super individual)..
Gov. job is to "collectivize" as a check and balance on the other super-individual to benefit the "ultimate power"..... which really isn't ultimate as you can see..
citizens United and basic INC. rules recognize the corp as an individual, which to me is a mistake to put them on the same plain as us.
They should have rules and regulations distinct for "super individuals"
Maybe best to call them what they really are "symbiotic super individuals at best but mostly parasitic, gathering resources and using "ultimate powers" in exchange for more power yet returning LESS then they gain as a group. Actually a definition of "profit"........

What does that leave?? 2 PARASITES fighting each other (but keeping each's collective "disease" in balance in the process) while the "true power" applauded and is cursed each in it's own turn.....

There is no way to have one without the other..... and they shouldn't be on the same page really. We've allowed to to to merge to become an 'ultra-super power"
Which is the problem.. Parasitism at it's highest level.........

Dystopia is not a fiction......it is here..........

The state nor business have ANY power without the blessing of the individuals that allow it.. That is ultimate power..
05-04-2011, 06:57 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
led to the hated New Deal of FDR
Why do you say 'hated'? (serious question) My understanding is that the new deal was not only almost universally lauded, but actually worked. My reading of American early 20th century politics tells me that both Roosevelt Presidents were, more or less, what would be branded as socialists by the hate spewing, uninformed that pass as the commentariate on fox news today

(maybe it was hated by the American aristocracy? and yes, there is such a thing,)


QuoteOriginally posted by wildman Quote
that the ultimate source of all the nation's wealth comes from the private sector doesn't it follow then that the ultimate source of all power also lies within the private sector?
Then why bother with the sham of elections? Both Bush Jnr elections were rigged and would not have passed the scrutiny of Un election scrutineers that we impose on other less established 'democracies'. There is a tradition of rigged elections in the US. Tammany hall and party 'bosses' have shown little respect for democracy over the journey. The goal is power, not suffrage. why does one side whine when the other side out-maneuvers the other to foist their point of view on the body politic?

)
05-04-2011, 07:10 AM   #7
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Money is Power - it is very simple!

Any election you can watch the tricks, stratagems, lies, propaganda and slogans (example:"socialist"). You will see the Joe the Plumbers brought on stage etc., etc.

Funny thing is it works and when it doesn't work then Mr. Money keeps plugging at it ("Obamacare" for instance) until it does.

This fantastic "democratic" machine is always, finally, and in the end able to persuade the voters to vote against their own interest.

Mr. Money always wins.
05-04-2011, 07:21 AM   #8
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I'm not quite so pessimistic or disillusioned - I do think that the democratic beast has its own moments where money interests get a push back, and that this does happen enough to keep the US from going entirely fascist.

One of society's ways of correction is through the arts - artists/poets/authors give voice and image to issues and concerns, and can move a public to amazingly unpredicted things... In this context, both the alienation of art - its commercialization, modernist self referentiality, its ghetoization - and attacks on public support of artists serve the needs of money.

05-04-2011, 08:12 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by wizofoz Quote
Why do you say 'hated'? (serious question) My understanding is that the new deal was not only almost universally lauded, but actually worked.
New Deal - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
05-04-2011, 04:16 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
When we start "collectivizing" (business,guilds) then the ultimate individual power gets suppressed for the sake of a collective power with a vested interest in making itself the ultimate, though artificial, power (think super individual)..
This comes very close to what many would simply call "civilization" - division of labor, commerce, technology, transportation system, a written body of laws, urbanization, politics etc. This "super individual" can both build great institutions of art and culture or incinerate 100,000 people in a flash as it did at Hiroshima. While its power may be "artificial" it is also very real. The question for me is can we control it and to what end?

QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
The state nor business have ANY power without the blessing of the individuals that allow it.. That is ultimate power..
Fair question: Is this a statement of fact or a statement of what should be?

QuoteOriginally posted by jeffkrol Quote
citizens United and basic INC. rules recognize the corp as an individual, which to me is a mistake to put them on the same plain as us.
We are on the same page here. If the corporation is an individual it is an individual that is predatory, amoral at best, often outright immoral and a sociopath. Couple this with vast power and you have a real problem.

QuoteOriginally posted by wizofoz Quote
Why do you say 'hated'?
There were many on both the left and right that hated the New Deal. The left because they thought it was just a ploy to prop up a decaying system that should be destroyed outright and on the right by those who accused FDR of being a traitor to his own (capitalist) class. Its complicated take a look at this:

Opposition to the New Deal

QuoteOriginally posted by wizofoz Quote
Then why bother with the sham of elections?
Indeed. I have often asked the same question myself.

BTW don't read to much into what my own personal views are I'm just trying to understand clearly how other see these issues.

Last edited by wildman; 05-04-2011 at 04:42 PM.
05-04-2011, 06:52 PM   #11
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DWB and Wildman, thanks for the references. From what I have been reading both the left and right critisised the New Deal. It seem to me that if the policy was being attacked from both sides it was probably pretty much correct.
05-04-2011, 09:05 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by wizofoz Quote
DWB and Wildman, thanks for the references. From what I have been reading both the left and right critisised the New Deal. It seem to me that if the policy was being attacked from both sides it was probably pretty much correct.
I think as a practical matter FDR pushed reform about as far as the country was ready for in the 1930s.

Then there was the war period which was very good for commercial and industrial interests with or without the New Deal.

By the time the war was over much of the New Deal had become entrenched in the economy. American commercial interests found themselves the dominant economic power in the world so why stir up social unrest at a time when there seemed to be enough wealth for everyone - leave the New Deal programs in place.

Take a look at the platforms of the Democratic and Republican parties during the 1950s and there was very little practical difference between the two with respect to the economy anyway.

Last edited by wildman; 05-04-2011 at 09:13 PM.
05-04-2011, 10:11 PM   #13
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I think the biggest problem here is voters choosing their candidate based on a single emotional issue without checking where he stands on other issues. Far too many people stop at abortion, gun ownership, etc and vote and then pay the consequences. While these issues are important, you better check out the rest of the package.
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