16 years in the making, this 32,000 motivational quote search engine can identify quotations by the name of the author, keyword, gender, general ethnicity, and by phrase. It’s yours to use for free. I think it is the most diverse, deep, and far-reaching quotation search engine on values, ethics, and wisdom anywhere in the Milky Way galaxy. Enjoy! – Jason
Imagine you are the head of your own country. You are in charge of making decisions that will lead to the greatest benefit of your nation. This may be simple to do with only a few people, but real nations do not consist of just a few like-minded people. In reality they contain several million individuals with objectives and desires that may not reflect those of your central authority. When decisions are centralized, you will lack meaningful participation and input from those who stand to be affected by any policies created. This will lead to widespread disagreement and dissatisfaction among the citizenry. Due to the lack of information and ability to satisfy all conditions, you will find it virtually impossible to centrally plan successfully, as has been the fate of every country that has tried.
This is where socialist theory breaks down in all practical applications. Prices are the means of reflecting all available information within the market. Prices are the signal from each individual producer and consumer to inform each other of the relative preference or scarcity of any and all available goods and services. When the abolition of private property leads to the abolition of prices, every actor within the market, including the supposed omniscient central planner loses a vital calculative device that dictates how to efficiently apply the means of production to alternative uses in order to achieve maximum efficiency and welfare within the society. This in turn renders the central planners objective to economically plan with maximum efficiency and regard for well-being an impossibility.
Socialism is often held in contempt over its many failures, yet it still maintains support from young and old minds for being “great in theory, but not in practice.” This old quip is represented by the generations of thinkers that have tried to improve the economic system, but it ignores the undeniable truth: that socialism, in all of its manifestations, is untenable both in theory and in practice.
It’s not socialism to demand that everyone in America have the right to a warm place to sleep at night, proper nutrition, and the right to a living wage. We can afford it. When an administration decides to go to war, not enough are questions are asked and answered, and cost is never an issue. Only 2 percent of the federal budget goes to welfare, compared with 16 percent for defense.
Is this America [spending a billion dollars on a presidential election in the wake of Citizens United]? Not in my mind. I think it's absolutely stupefying.
…the real purpose of socialism is precisely to overcome and advance beyond the predatory phase of human development.
Clarity about the aims and problems of socialism is of greatest significance in our age of transition. Since, under present circumstances, free and unhindered discussion of these problems has come under a powerful taboo.
To me, what socialism means is to guarantee a basic level of dignity. It's asserting the value of saying that the America we want and the America that we are proud of is one in which all children can access a dignified education. It's one in which no person is too poor to have the medicines they need to live.
It’s important we realize how this virus hasn’t just created new problems; but poured gasoline on the crises we’ve long had. It’s okay if you didn’t see the extreme urgency of our healthcare, housing, wage, carceral, FPol, etc. crises before. But I hope you don’t 'unsee' them later.
I have spent a good deal of my life trying to write a history of labor’s century-long fight for progressively shorter work hours, and the accompanying dream of what Walt Whitman called ‘the higher progress’. This... [refers to] the confident expectation that economic progress was paving the way to humane and moral progress. After providing for the material necessities of life, technology would free us, increasingly, for better things. Eventually we would have plenty of time for family, friends, beauty, joy, creativity, God and nature.
The growth of monopolies is introducing in America many of the evils associated with State Socialism as it has existed in Russia. From the standpoint of liberty, it makes no difference to a man whether his only possible employer is the State or a Trust.
A key impediment to Eisenhower’s nomination, however, was that the Republican Party was just as nuts then as it is today. One only has to read the party’s 1952 platform to get a sense of its dubious grasp of political reality. You’d think that the Communist Party, rather than the Democratic Party, had been in power for the previous 20 years. When it came to the platform’s depiction of the Democrats, it anticipated the paranoid transports of today’s Trumpists:
We charge that they have arrogantly deprived our citizens of precious liberties by seizing powers never granted. We charge that they work unceasingly to achieve their goal of national socialism. We charge that they have disrupted internal tranquility by fostering class strife for venal political purposes. We charge that they have choked opportunity and hampered progress by unnecessary and crushing taxation. They claim prosperity but the appearance of economic health is created by war expenditures, waste and extravagance, planned emergencies, and war crises. They have debauched our money by cutting in half the purchasing power of our dollar. We charge that they have weakened local self-government which is the cornerstone of the freedom of men. We charge that they have shielded traitors to the Nation in high places, and that they have created enemies abroad where we should have friends. We charge that they have violated our liberties by turning loose upon the country a swarm of arrogant bureaucrats and their agents who meddle intolerably in the lives and occupations of our citizens. We charge that there has been corruption in high places, and that examples of dishonesty and dishonor have shamed the moral standards of the American people. We charge that they have plunged us into war in Korea without the consent of our citizens through their authorized representatives in the Congress, and have carried on that war without will to victory.
Because “my country is our country” means more than my money.
The right-wing accusations against Barack Obama are true. He is a socialist, although he practices socialism for corporations.
The sorts of populist ideals espoused by progressives of the 1900s are no more exclusive to the Democratic Party now than they were then. Although President Trump has done less swamp draining than many of his supporters hoped for, his electoral success on the right and Bernie Sanders' better than expected showing on the left demonstrates an appetite for many of the same principles that early progressives championed. Trump and Sanders highlighted rising inequality and the corrupting influence of money in Washington, D.C., during their campaigns.
As with Kant, John Rawls's goal is the preservation of freedom from the compulsory will of another. Kant's categorical imperative supports what Rawls calls the difference principle: Social and economic inequalities should be arranged so that they are to the greatest benefit of the least advantaged before they improve the condition of the more advantaged.
One difference between libertarianism and socialism is that a socialist society can't tolerate groups of people practicing freedom, but a libertarian society can comfortably allow people to choose voluntary socialism. If a group of people — even a very large group — wanted to purchase land and own it in common, they would be free to do so. The libertarian legal order would require only that no one be coerced into joining or giving up his property.
Liberalism celebrates certain values: reasonableness, conversation, compassion, tolerance, intellectual humility and optimism. Liberalism is horrified by cruelty. Sanders’s leadership style embodies the populist values, which are different: rage, bitter and relentless polarization, a demand for ideological purity among your friends and incessant hatred for your supposed foes. A liberal leader confronts new facts and changes his or her mind. A populist leader cannot because the omniscience of the charismatic headman can never be doubted. A liberal sees shades of gray. For a populist reality is white or black, friend or enemy. Facts that don’t fit the dogma are ignored. A liberal sees inequality and tries to reduce it. A populist sees remorseless class war and believes in concentrated power to crush the enemy.
Bernie Sanders also claims he’s just trying to import the Scandinavian model, which is believable if you know nothing about Scandinavia or what Sanders is proposing. Those countries do have generous welfare states, but they can afford them because they understand how free market capitalism works, with fewer regulations on business creation and free trade.
But this is America. We pretty much don't go anywhere near socialism, at least not overtly, and in any given decade — especially the recent ones — we're lucky to get away with anything less than creeping fascism.
I observe God's Golden Rule: treat others the way you want to be treated. If you want healthcare, ensure that every man, woman, and child has healthcare. If you want a home to call your own, ensure that everyone in the United States has home. You want to have enough to eat, then you have to ensure that every person has enough to eat. If this sounds like Socialism, it is not, it is Christianity at its core.
The world is in the midst of a democratic recession. That’s the conclusion of the political scientists Nic Cheeseman and Brian Klaas in their book, How to Rig an Election. Antidemocratic leaders have developed a toolkit of election-rigging practices they can use to manipulate votes, which allows them to hold elections—but keep their office no matter what. That practice is essential to understanding the increasingly uncompetitive nature of so much of politics worldwide, even in democracies.
The enterprises of the country are aggregating vast corporate combinations of unexampled capital, boldly marching, not for economic conquests only, but for political power.
I think it makes sense to think of socialism on a spectrum, with countries and policies being more or less socialist, rather than either/or. It’s fair to say, for example, that single-payer health care is a more socialist policy than private, market-based health care. But that doesn’t mean that single-payer is the most socialist health-care policy one could dream up, nor that any country that uses such a system is de facto socialist. Certain policies will lean more in the direction of decommodification and social or cooperative ownership of certain goods, and others will incline toward commodifying certain goods and relying on market devices to decide their distribution. Along these axes, we can determine whether policies are more or less socialist.
The ideals of the Judaeo-Christian tradition cannot possibly become realities in a materialistic civilization whose structure is centered around production, consumption, and success in the market.
Since I am today still a socialist, as I always was, I believe that the new form of society will be a form of humanistic socialism that is as distant from exiting capitalism as from the falsification of socialism that Soviet communism calls itself. The question, however, is how much more time we have to come to understanding and to change our direction…
If I read the temper of our people correctly, we now realize as we have never realized before our interdependence on each other; that we can not merely take but we must give as well; that if we are to go forward, we must move as a trained and loyal army willing to sacrifice for the good of a common discipline, because without such discipline no progress is made, no leadership becomes effective. We are, I know, ready and willing to submit our lives and property to such discipline, because it makes possible a leadership which aims at a larger good. This I propose to offer, pledging that the larger purposes will bind upon us all as a sacred obligation with a unity of duty hitherto evoked only in time of armed strife. With this pledge taken, I assume unhesitatingly the leadership of this great army of our people dedicated to a disciplined attack upon our common problems.
I am opposed to socialism because it dreams ingeniously of good, truth, beauty, and equal rights.
There is all the difference in the world between treating people equally and attempting to make them equal.
[Socialistic] economic planning, regulation, and intervention pave the way to totalitarianism by building a power structure that will inevitably be seized by the most power-hungry and unscrupulous.
Social justice rests on the hate towards those that enjoy a comfortable position, namely, upon envy.
Socialism can only be put into practice only by methods which most socialists disapprove.
Straightforward, though bracing: if the design of corporate capitalism is unable to sustain values of equality, genuine democracy, liberty, and ecological sustainability as a matter of inherent systemic architecture, what systemic ‘design’ might ultimately achieve and sustain these values? (Especially given the total failure of the traditional twentieth-century alternative, state socialism?).
What we now have often involves the worst of both corporate capitalism and state socialism. Despite some undeniable gains, the corporate foundation, complexity, and bureaucratic irrationality of our current healthcare system, for instance, should be countered by the simplicity of a single-payer system (or even the provision of medical care directly as a public service without a layer of insurance that adds extra costs and complications).
Community, in short, is what is missing as an organizing principle from both corporate capitalism and state socialism — both institutionally, and in a deeper philosophical sense. As early as 1949, the philosopher Martin Buber argued that these well-known traditions were already added to the end. He urged a slow and deliberate reconstruction of local, cooperative community economic institutions in a long march to a different culture and a different future.
Neither traditional socialism nor traditional capitalism deals well with the power problems presented by large-scale enterprise. Significant economic actors in the socialist state are commonly unaccountable either to market forces or to the public; they are power systems within a power system. The modern for-profit corporation is for the most part unaccountable to the public— and contrary to traditional theory, in most cases unaccountable to its shareholders as well.
Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it.
Every record has been destroyed or falsified, every book has been rewritten, every picture has been repainted, every statue and street building has been renamed, every date has been altered. And that process is continuing day by day and minute by minute. History has stopped. Nothing exists except the endless present in which the party is always right.
Although the equality of each citizen before the law is the rock upon which the American Constitution rests, economic equality has never been an American ideal. …The furious and enduring terror of communism in America is not entirely the work of those cold warriors Truman and Acheson; dislike of economic equality is something deep-grained in the American Protestant economic character.
As a political science major, I read enough Marx and Lenin, and knew enough about the suffering caused by Communist ideology (in which the term "political correctness” originated), to disdain knee-jerk leftist rhetoric that romanticized socialism.
Let’s not talk anymore of capitalism and socialism; let’s just talk of using the incredible wealth of the earth for human beings. Give people what they need: food, water, clean air, pleasant homes to live in, trees, some grass! Some hours of work; more hours of leisure. Don’t ask “Who deserves it?” Every human being deserves it.
Compassion is not weakness, and concern for the unfortunate is not socialism.
Condemning the extent to which the prevailing economic order privileged corporate profits over all else, John Kenneth Galbraith urged Democrats to chart a new path. 'No longer,' he argued, 'could those negatively affected by soaring income inequality and stagnant wages be told that the system works.' Instead, 'The Democratic Party must henceforth use the word socialism. It describes what is needed.' But Democrats ultimately chose to sprint in precisely the opposite direction: Far from embracing socialism, they doubled down on capitalism.
As we’re seeing right now, decades of Republican governance have actually degraded the government’s ability to act with the speed and confidence necessary to stop anything, much less a fast-moving disease. I have to imagine that if [“Outbreak”] were made today, or in the near future, it would show just the opposite: A broken, degraded government led by narcissists and sycophants, unable to respond to the ordinary problems of governance much less a crisis.
“Outbreak” may depict a strong, capable federal government, but it leaves me wondering whether, in the aftermath of the coronavirus, Americans will lose even more faith in the ability of institutions to do anything. And if that happens, what does it mean for those of us who want to build a more humane society?" Jamelle Bouie
Already this pandemic has usefully complicated catchphrases
George Orwell wrote: 'Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it.' This is very relevant in the era of Donald Trump, in that the designs he has for the Executive Branch of the United States government (and which can be said to some degree to represent other Presidents since Reagan) bends toward autocracy, oligarchy, etc. Both liberals and libertarians would have a natural aversion to this kind of overweening power in the hands of one man and his cronies. Indeed, when Orwell talks of breaking down power concentrated in a few hands, that naturally leads to placing power in the hands of the many“ which many strands of political progressivism and economic libertarianism can both claim credit for supporting.
If the East India Company's sweet deal by the Crown enraged American colonists, 250 years later we are still pissed off when democracy is subverted by politicians getting their palms greased by moneyed interests. If love of money is the root of all evil, my friends, we are languishing in the midst of evil.
Those of you who sneered at a 'socialist' running for president: those checks pouring out of Washington are the epitome of 'socialism'. Who will be sending theirs back?
Yep, proud to be liberal. This is not to say that liberals cannot be tolerant to a fault, misguided, or Pollyannaish; they can. But c'mon, it's not a derogatory term! – Communism was not synonymous with liberalism; it was an unjust, imperialistic bastardization of Marxism and socialism, which has vision and beauty marking it.
The Trump tax-cut plan owes its incipient success to many factors, including the insatiable thirst of its donor wing and the widespread belief that the party needed a “win” in order to stave off electoral disaster. (Why the issue to which they would stake their do-or-die effort became a regressive tax cut, rather than a more popular measure, is rarely examined.) But an underrated element in the formula is the persistent belief among the party elite in the most radical version of supply-side economics.
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