The Great Hippy Think Tank

Discussion in 'Politics' started by BeatinFeet69, May 14, 2018.

  1. Running Horse

    Running Horse Workin' on bein' an ol' asshole

    Such a vast conglomeration of minds here. Why don't we put them to good use & try to solve the world's problems. No issue is too big or too small so long as it pertains to humanity as a whole. Also no you don't actually have to identify as a hippy to respond.

    What shall we start with? Ahh yes how about the current financial crisis that is the modern era. Capitalism, where the rich get richer & the poor get poorer. Is there a better way to run the global economy than to use a "medium of exchange"? Is there a way to motivate people to work without the promise of a monetary reward?
     
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  2. GeorgeJetStoned

    GeorgeJetStoned Odd Member

    This could be solved readily by developing other avenues of trade among ourselves. While money is a convenient way to translate worth, it loses something when it comes under the control of a centralized government entity. However, the lack of a centralized system for assigning value is exactly why so many interim currencies have failed.

    While I appreciate your call for all of humanity, it would be more likely to work in local situations and in many ways it already does. The "advanced" nations are slaves to assigned value currencies, which makes barter systems harder to establish. Perhaps we, the hippies, would be better able to set the example. Part of that would mean bartering other products that have been associated with us for decades. Things like homemade wine, garments, soap and of course, POT.

    With the potential for legalized marijuana SO freakin close, it makes sense it could be the cornerstone of this effort. That is, once the oinkers are removed from the equation.
     
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  3. Noserider

    Noserider Ditzy Surfer Girl

    I'm doing quite well financially, actually. My level of affluence surpassed that my parents.

    I just mentioned this in another thread. I've weathered the poor storm, the student storm, the pay back student loans storm, and am finally doing well. And to think, a year ago I was stealing toilet paper from work.

    Anyway, this nonsense about the Rick get richer, the poor get poorer and happy practiconers of capitalism are too stupid to stupid to realize they are being screwed by it, is just that: nonsense.

    I busted my ass in school and in my 20s. Now, I've got my little slice of the American dream and I'm satisfied. I worked hard and things are paying off.
     
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  4. Running Horse

    Running Horse Workin' on bein' an ol' asshole

    I'm glad that you've managed to attain a decent spot in life however if capitalism works, if money goes around fairly & everyone is capable of achieving affluence, then why is the level of homelessness higher than it has ever been since the great depression? If capitalism works why are there African Americans & women on the streets day in & day out protesting unequal wages? Why are there fewer & fewer well paying jobs available these days? Why is the U.S. itself in such massive & insurmountable debt? Why are housing prices so ludicrously high?

    These are all issues that can be laid squarely at the feet of capitalism. They need to be addressed but capitalist society has had more than enough time to do so & has failed to.
     
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  5. Irminsul

    Irminsul Valkyrie

    Rising sea waters? How about heaps of plants that use sea water and convert it to clean water and then we can fill all the rivers and dams and drinking water for everybody. :) and then the islands won't be submerged either.
     
  6. unfocusedanakin

    unfocusedanakin The Archaic Revival Lifetime Supporter

    Capitalism and humanity are not compatible. Even though in America we try to make Jesus into a businessman and say we are Christian the nature of capitalism is to take all you can as long as you can. If you take from someone else that is their fault for allowing it. They must be too stupid or lazy to stop it. So why should you not succeed? Charity is a gift for the lazy. They must learn to fish you can not fish for them. The reason you see the issues you mentioned is the belief that those people have failed in life. So in a way the deserve what has happened to them. The free market will decide so if the wage is low you find a new job. Never mind the fact that is now the system works. If no one pays a fair wage, no one will decide to since there is no need. None of this is Christian.

    The long term result of Capitalism is what you see now in America. Most of the wealth is held by a small amount of people who now control the goverment and its polices. The "middle class" is an illusion and is simply not possible long term in a 100% capitalist system. There must always be a winner and looser in every financial transaction.

    The only reason the middle class existed in the past is socialist polities requiring public services to be affordable,. as well as taxes and wages being high. This is why I believe in Democratic Socialism. A successful society will understand that yes people need the room to be free and create so they can be rich BUT there are some things which are above money and the inherent greed of a successful businessman such as healthcare and education. But it can also be said that in a pure socialist society you have some problems as well. Government is not a black and white issue. We in America try to make it so with our two party system and pro elite goverment. The proletariat has the power. And one day we will realize that.
     
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  7. ZenKarma

    ZenKarma Shuffling Realities Staff Member Super Moderator

    Well said, with focus. Yes, the wealth is mostly in the hands of a few, the results are obvious and all around us - except for the enclaves of the rich.

    One truism I found from being in business for some decades, and is universal from continent to continent (not just here in the USA) is that to get ahead one must be willing to do the unethical to succeed, and win at the game of capitalism. Whether as simple as lying on one's taxes, to rigging prices, taking paybacks and bribes - the successful are not the nicest people you may want to know.
     
  8. ZenKarma

    ZenKarma Shuffling Realities Staff Member Super Moderator

    Seems to be a meme that is built into modern day humans. Perhaps it is society and the media that perpetuates it, but also, the system is rigged so there is no other reward that is believable to western minds.
     
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  9. Noserider

    Noserider Ditzy Surfer Girl

    To my knowledge, capitalism doesn't address any of those concerns, nor does it cause any of them.

    Capitalism doesn't say money goes around fairly. And not everyone is capable of achieving affluence. Everyone has the opportunity to achieve it, but that doesn't mean they all will.

    And are there really fewer and fewer well paying jobs these days? I would assume it was the opposite, what with factory jobs being outsourced overseas. But I think there are more tech jobs today than ever before. The workforce is changing. We're evolving from blue collar to white collar jobs in this country.
     
  10. Running Horse

    Running Horse Workin' on bein' an ol' asshole

    Capitalism assigns value to certain items over others, assigns value to certain jobs over others, assigns value on little pieces of paper or small bits of metal & then proceeds to say that you must have those items to be able to survive in society. Therefore any struggle of survival within the system it creates & maintains is it's fault.

    Does a man who is incapable of grasping higher math have the same opportunity as one who excels at it? Do jobs that require a higher level of education not have superior pay? No not everyone has this so called opportunity. Only those who fit the specific mold crafted by capitalist society do.

    Based on my personal experience in the workforce factory jobs are some of the best paying a man without a college education can get.

    This, THIS is exactly the problem with capitalist society. Eventually there will be nothing left for the average working man. The people who built this country with their blood, sweat, & tears are being shoved tp the bottom of the pile in the name of progress.
     
  11. Meliai

    Meliai Evenstar

    I'm not opposed to capitalism but i am opposed to unbridled, unrestricted capitalism. It isnt sustainable. At some point consumerism as we know it just isnt going to be a viable way to live and humanity is going to be forced to make some big adjustments. We may not see that happen in our lifetimes but it will happen one day.

    Also just to touch on some points that have been brought up

    The US is going to have to do something to make education more affordable to accomodate the demand for highly skilled, white collar jobs. No one wants to get out of school 100k in debt plus interest

    I do think some trade/blue collar jobs will always be needed in the US but those who want to do a trade rather than go to college need to pay attention to the skills that are in demand and take steps to get training for them

    The world is in the middle of a transition period right now with globalization. I dont really know what will happen in the next few decades but I think first world workers everywhere will have to adjust their expectations and learn new skills as jobs move overseas to third world countries. Trying to compete with overseas workers making $2 an hour for the same type of work isnt realistic. At some point blue collar workers will have to admit some jobs are gone forever. But some remain.

    I'm not idealistic enough anymore to really offer anything more insightful, sorry. Most alternatives to capitalism just seem like a hopeless utopia, not something that could actually work. I do think we will have to move away from excessive consumerism and unbridled capitalism but it will be a slow transition mostly borne out of neccessity in response to environmental destruction
     
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  12. tumbling.dice

    tumbling.dice I Am Only An Egg Lifetime Supporter HipForums Supporter

    That is one of the most terrifying things I've read since being on Hip Forums. Yes, there is a way alright.
     
  13. Noserider

    Noserider Ditzy Surfer Girl

    Money existed long before capitalism, and still exists in non capitalist societies. Not sure how assigning value to money is a capitalism only thing.


    Opportunity for what? Making money? Yes.

    Define education. Plumbers, electricians, and contractors, for example, make very good money. My mom knew a high school dropout who made six figures a year capping--whatever that means--oil wells.

    Again, not the fault of capitalism. Capitalism was in play in the 1950s when factory workers supported a housewife and three kids plus owned two cars and took vacations every year. In fact, one might argue that those opportunities existed because of capitalism.

    I don't buy that. Sorry. Prior to the Industrial Revolution, our economy was almost completely agrarian in nature. The nature of our economy shifted and people adapted and survived back then when factory jobs overtook farming. I put myself through school working two jobs and acquiring student loan debt that took years to pay off. But I did it. I chose to.

    I just don't see how the problems you mention are the result of capitalism. But, if you really do believe that, what system do you propose? How do we "fix" a system that rewards people for hard work and yet does not punish those who do not work hard--the coffers for social safety nets are filled because of worker bees in the capitalist system, don't forget.

    Not trying to be a total bitch here, but I almost feel that shitting on capitalism and saying it doesn't work is to say I am where I am because of luck or social standing or something, and not because of hard work. And that's insulting.
     
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  14. I'minmyunderwear

    I'minmyunderwear voice of sexy

    what demand? there's way more people graduating from college than there are jobs for them, that's why so many college graduates are waiting tables and such.

    from what i've seen, the demand is for everything other than skilled, white collar jobs. anyone hiring a position that doesn't require a college degree is getting desperate, because nobody will even apply for those jobs.

    i do agree that education needs to be made more affordable, but i think getting into and getting through college should be more merit based rather than just pushing out diplomas to anyone whose parents are able to afford it.
     
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  15. 6-eyed shaman

    6-eyed shaman ShamaLamaDingDong

    “I crawled under barb wire, dodged bullets, hopped fences, went several days without food or water, nearly died, and left everything behind to escape free market capitalism”

    -Said no person ever
     
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  16. Noserider

    Noserider Ditzy Surfer Girl

    I agree with a lot of this post, but some things I'd like to dissect...

    I'm sure cavemen didn't want to hunt down a woolly mammoth with a rock-tipped spear, but when starvation was the alternative, they did it anyway. Our ancestors' survival depended on how many animals they killed and how many nuts and berries they gathered; ours depends on going to work and earning a paycheck. I feel like there is this unrealistic expectation on capitalism to raise us from our animal selves. And when it doesn't, it suddenly becomes flawed.

    So, if our "survival"--and our society does not let someone die the way our pre-capitialist primal hunter-gatherer societies did--depends on student loan debt, shouldn't we all do what we have to to survive? We always have. Why is our generation so special that we can opt out of the 21st Century version of hunting and gathering and still be as well off as those who hunt and gather everyday?

    Metaphorically speaking...

    What do you mean by this exactly? Who defines what is excessive? I mean, if I have 5 bucks in my pocket, the choice to spend it is up to me; if i have 5,000 bucks in my pocket, same rules should apply. I mean, I'm pretty damn Libertarian, and even I don't support unchecked business practices that exploit employees. But telling consumers how to spend their money doesn't jive with me. Capitalism is all about supply and demand. If there is no demand for certain goods or services--due to checking excessive consumerism--then there is no need for workers to supply said goods or services. Half the jobs in this country only exist because of unchecked consumerism. You start messing with that, there are more lost jobs.

    Way I see it, capitalism is like democracy: we the people have the power. Capitalism responds to consumer trends. Here's an example: I was talking to a coworker the other day who was going on and on and on about Toys R Us closing, or Sears, or whichever brick-and-mortar store it was. She was like, "Oh, that store is a hallmark of my childhood, it's as American as apple pie and baseball, and how it's a goddamn shame to see it swept under the rug and blah, blah, freakin' blah.

    Then I asked her where she did her Christmas shopping.

    Oh, Amazon, she said.

    The days of the mom-and-pop store died years ago. Not because capitalism is bad; but because we consumers chose Toys R Us and Sears over the little guy. Now, Sears and Toys R Us are going under. Why? Because we the people chose Amazon instead. Capitalism and consumerism aren't some poison; they are the result of what we all want.
     
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  17. Meliai

    Meliai Evenstar

    The most in demand jobs right now are in the healthcare and IT fields, ie jobs that require more specialized education beyond a generic liberal arts degree. The people I know who ended up waiting tables after college all had English or other liberal arts degrees and most eventually went back to school for something more specific

    dont you live in sort of an economically depressed area? That may be shaping your perspective of the economy . There is a very high demand here for skilled workers in healthcare, IT, engineering, and other STEM related fields
     
  18. Meliai

    Meliai Evenstar

    Except in terms of higher education it isnt an issue of wanting to get out of doing what our parents did. Its the fact that younger generations have it so much harder than their parents did. Tuition costs have outpaced inflation.. by a lot. This article breaks it down pretty well

    Here’s how much more expensive it is for you to go to college than it was for your parents

    Student debt is one thing, but saddling students with debt they dont have any hopes of ever paying off is quite another

    And like i've already touched on, the world is changing and part of the solution is adjusting our expectations. Some people are realizing it is a better idea to attend a 2 year trade school, less debt and in some cases a more lucrative career

    But some jobs that are in demand do require a 4 year degree or masters degree or beyond, and that does require taking on a lot of debt for most people



    By excessive I mean unsustainable. Our ability to buy whatever we want whenever we want is not environmentally sustainable. Humans have a pretty good ability to ignore that which is not right in front of them, we keep buying plastic because we cant see the trash islands in the middle of the ocean, we dont care about the environmental and human impact of our electronics because we cant see the mines or the humans who work in them. These are just a couple of examples. And I dont think much will be done to curb the excesses of capitalism, i'm not even saying that it should happen, because I know it wont, there is far too much money to be made in the short term to pay attention to the long term ramifcations. And like you said, consumers dont care. They just want a good deal.

    But eventually there will be an environmental reckoning. Our way of life creates really wasteful byproducts and humanity cant continue like this indefinitely
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2018
  19. I'minmyunderwear

    I'minmyunderwear voice of sexy

    i do now, but i've moved around a decent amount as an adult and have seen pretty much the same situation everywhere i've lived, to varying extents.

    i do know that nursing has been kind of the default fallback career in most places i've lived, and the people that go through that schooling never have a shortage of jobs. the other stuff, not so much. at least not without expecting to relocate far, far away.
     
  20. YouFreeMe

    YouFreeMe HipForums Supporter

    I don't know of a system of government that results in zero inequality, unfortunately. Nature tends towards unequal outcomes, but that is not to say that we (as moral creatures) shouldn't strive for some sort of fairness, which is where we must keep capitalism checked (if capitalism is the path we choose to walk).
     

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