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Comment Re:What? (Score 1) 62

Why does the market bear so much?

Because it's a bear market. And Microsoft is a has-been who can't make anyone want to "upgrade" to their newest OS even for free. So their future, if they are to have any, is in acquiring other, possibly relevant companies, and that's best done in a bear market when they're cheap.

Comment Re:Communism. Right. (Score 1) 463

With any hint of self interest (enlightened or otherwise), and the system eventually breaks down.

So has every other system so far. Capitalism itself only managed to survive it's previous near-fatal crisis by taking a huge step to the left. And it seems to be undergoing a slow-motion collapse of ever worse conditions for ever greater amounts of people stuck at the bottom as those at the top confiscate all the resources for their own use.

Comment Re: competition (Score 1) 463

The point of a basic income is to get power over those receiving it.

How do you use unconditional, inalienable entitlement to wield power over someone? You can't revoke it because it's unconditional and inalienable, after all.

If anything, basic income will make it harder to wield power over anyone, especially the poor. And that, of course, is the real reason why it's opposed.

The idea that its purpose is to help the weak is propaganda for suckers.

"Sucker" here meaning anyone who cares about the fate of the weak, or entertains the notion that they might ever be one.

Of course, in a more socialist society - such as one with basic income - it just plain doesn't matter as much whether you're a "sucker" or not, because the consequences of losing aren't as severe. You'll have a roof over you head, clothes on your back and food on your table no matter what. And that'll make it harder to use FUD for propaganda purposes, like you're doing here.

Comment Re:Welp, I know what I'm going to do. (Score 1) 463

So you're telling me I can get ~everything~ I want and need to consume. Even if I put the bare minimum effort (or no effort.) However no matter what I do, I can not become more than "middle class."

No, you'll get a guaranteed minimum share of the whole pie. If you want that share to be larger in absolute terms, you'll have to grow the whole pie. You can't benefit yourself at other people's expense, you can only benefit yourself by benefiting everyone else as well. On the other hand, all effort you put into growing the pie actually grows the pie, rather than get confiscated and moved to a tax haven by a fat cat.

You can't become more than middle class, but you can make "middle class" mean "my own star system".

In the long term, no one will work, and the whole thing will collapse on itself. As socialism and communism always does.

Russia seems to be failing at capitalism and democracy just as hard as it failed at communism, or perhaps even harder since at least the Bolsheviks did succeed at industrializing the country and beating the Nazis. Should we declare those things hopeless pipe dreams too?

Comment Re:over-simplification of economy (Score 1) 463

Money is NOT "control over other people", and it differs from a whip and shackles in that I can tell you to take your money and stuff it.

Of course you can tell your slavemaster to take his whip and shackles and stuff it. You'll simply get whipped for that. In the case of chattel slavery the whip is made of leather, in the case of our glorious capitalist system it's made of poverty. Either way you'll keep your mouth shut and do what you're told, after a few sessions at the whipping post if not from the start.

Comment Re:Question (Score 1) 463

Countries covered with snow a large part of the year have an annual reminder that sloth leads to death, and it's strongly ingrained in the cultures of many It's harder to destroy their work ethic, but nevertheless it's still happening.

I live in Finland, and I've never even heard of this association. No, the reason for Nordic work ethic is simply that society is seen as a shared project where everyone does what they can for the common good. If you're lazy and do just the bare minimum you must, you aren't stiffing just your employer, you're stiffing your country and everyone who lives in it. That's also why Nordic countries are relatively non-corrupted.

And yes, this work ethic is dying, not because of socialism but because intrusion of the right-wing idea that everyone is responsible only for themselves, not for other people or for their society.

Comment Re: Question (Score 1) 463

Oh really? So Joe gets paid $500 on Sunday as wages from his job. He spends $300 on booze and lobster at a strip club on Monday. He then gets mugged attempting to by weed on Tuesday and loses $200. He's starting to get pretty hungry by Thursday, and on Friday his landlord is getting pretty anxious about his rent. Question: do we let Joe go die? No? Then letting people make economic choices is a pipe dream.

Fixed that for you.

Pass UBI without the backbone to let people Darwin themselves and Joes might come out of the woodwork. Hell, I might be one.

Right. So how comes you are not dead yet? Or do strip clubs only admit people on welfare where you live?

Comment Re:Prove it! (Score 1) 463

If given a choice between sitting on your ass and getting paid and working and getting paid, the _majority_ will sit on their ass.

Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that that's true. Let's further assume that it makes a difference, that the economy needs these unmotivated people to do jobs they hate and will do worse without them. With those assumptions made... Which one is more important, Freedom or economic efficiency? Because you can't have them both.

Comment Re:Oh boy (Score 2) 359

Trump is an incompetent, pompous ass and a political newcomer, hated by both Democrats and Republicans. He is lucky if Congress doesn't cut the White House kitchen budget just out of spite. What Trump wants is pretty much irrelevant since he isn't going to get it.

And yet Trump won the primary and got the Republican nomination. When the Rancor goes down, maybe it's time to stop underestimating the weird kid with a lightsaber?

Comment Re:Hah! (Score 2) 446

To be fair though it certainly seems like people now are much more willing to give up opportunity and freedom for the illusion of security (Economic and otherwise) and to be removed from the list of responsible parties for their lives.

As the world continues getting more interconnected that list keeps growing longer. Your fortunes are ever more dependent on what other people do, the current economic crisis being an excellent example. Nor can this trend be reversed because advanced technology depends on specialization. In such a world being responsible for yourself means abandoning the pleasant fantasy that you depend on no one, and seeking to influence the forces that shape your world to make them take your needs into account.

Comment Re:Glad (Score 1) 409

It's kind of like the streets in your neighborhood. Everyone knows what reasonable use of those roads is. But what about the family with a dozen cars taking up all the street parking?

No, it's not like the public streets, it's like if you pay for a parking lot and then get told you may not keep your car there because the parking company wants to rent each space to multiple people.

Comment Re: Also for blackmailing them (Score 4, Insightful) 144

Except the piss goes on them, and all of them paid handsomely with their dignity.

So does this mean anyone who has a pee fetish is unworthy of respect? What other sexual practices disqualify one from having dignity - anything except missionary position for the sole purpose of procreation with the lights off?

Or is the real issue here that, after the piss goes on them, they take a shower and get on with their lives, having suffered no actual harm whatsoever, and that insults your sense of propriety?

Comment Re: Bullshit (Score 1) 144

No. The problem is that it's socially undesirable (whether as a provider or customer), even in places where it is legal. This allows the hooker to simply extort when times are hard.

The same cultural memes which make such extortion viable also lower the bar to simply murdering the extorting prostitute. It relies on the idea that sex is sinful and diminishes those practicing it.

And so does your unstated premise that a prostitute is any more likely to be criminally inclined than any other professional who might learn embarassing secrets about you. After all, normal honest people aren't going to extort someone just because an opportunity arises.

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