Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
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Gamera
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Post: #21
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 04 23:56)Aptrgangr Wrote:  
(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  A fat commodity-fetishist and pseudo-socialist hipster. A prime example of America's late capitalist individuals to me. Big Grin


Why do you think they are in bed with each other? Have you ever wondered why the big cats support and sponsor this kind of leftism in universities, schools, media and public discourse?

Same reason why, at the same time, they give financial support to neoclassical theory and libertarian thought at Faculties of Economics all around the world: it serves oligarchic interest the best. A deregulated, free market society with progressive elements here and there, effectively masking the true nature of our elite's material and spiritual dominance over the social body. It is the economic base which determines what superstructure may bring about, not the other way around. Reinforcing that kind of leftism, "mainstream leftism" let's call it, simply works as a condition for active consent by those dominated. It also legitimizes a never-ending influx of the so-called "reserve army of labour" from underdeveloped countries; an infinite source of cheap labor in the hands of big capital, mechanically cheapening labor cost in its entirety in any given society.

This is, of course, a deeply contradictory system of thought, and is the reason why I detest most of the European mainstream left: they embody this contradiction in its highest political form. It is the very reason why over here it is not uncommon to call European leftists "walking contradictions", and to take American so-called "socialists" as a joke.

Yet, I digress. My point is that by no means any of this implies that all theories the mainstream left currently holds up are inherently against any particular country's ethos. Some have achieved significant progress for a nation, the most conspicuous example being universal healthcare. And it is redistribution through mechanisms such as progressive taxation (if well-implemented) which sustains a healthy, ever-increasing patrimonial middle-class, preventing the concentration of wealth in a few hands.

“I'm an economist. I've even got a PhD in Economics. Yet, I'm a good person, I swear!” - Rafael Correa, president of Ecuador
2015 May 05 02:50
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Surtr Kvlt
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Post: #22
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 05 02:02)Osweo Wrote:  I haven't really been paying attention to this debate, but what's that picture about above? What's she got on her wrist?
https://www.voeblogg.no/2015/05/02/et-li...elsevesen/
Fuck all it seems. Photos are just some lass sitting in a hospital waiting room. Just a blog about some girls hospital visit in the US Norwegian in the US is in pain and goes to nearest American hospital. Receptionist makes a sexist joke. Parents sort out insurance. Then a bit about the awkwardness of using medical terms and so on in English for a Norwegian speaker. And then about missing some stuff because of being at hospital.

I tries to check what the colour band means but they are retardedly unstandardised. Pink band (probably) means restricted extremity
http://www.connectmidmissouri.com/m/news/story?id=96468
Freedums.

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2015 May 05 08:49
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Temnozor
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Post: #23
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 04 21:32)Surtr Kvlt Wrote:  Yeah man fuck the poor/unemployed/underemployed/underpaid amirite? Rolleyes

Yeah, fuck the people who earn money and give it to those who don't, amirite? You know, redistribution of wealth is not the only way to improve the poor's living. And probably there are ways to do so without creating massive state bureaucracies and fucking over the economy.

Quote:The rising wealth inequality has increased the need for welfare spending. To want to take away public services because brown people use them is madness. Far larger of a cost is pensions. Cutting everything and lowering taxes (especially for the more wealthy) exacerbates the problem. Get ready for the next financial crisis.

Before discussing the need of increasing or decreasing the welfare spending, we should first look on how the funds we have now are being allocated. And a lot of it is being spent on bullshit from what I see, brown people included. So this rather implies a necessity of cuts in the first place. Whether certain areas need an increase in funding can be evaluated afterwards, but feeding the welfare machinery without a proper recoordination to actually meaningful needs will result in a bottomless pit. And it will drag on the middle class, which is already shrinking anyway.

Also, above you have mentioned the poor, but if I think about it, here where I live, most poor people or those on the dole are immigrants (being rather poor and a non-native myself). They are the greatest and most useless burden on the welfare system. Europe has had nice social market economies (Germany being the best example) before it was flooded by aliens. Now it hasn't, so I guess there is some correlation. As for now, by "helping the poor" and "increasing welfare" I mostly think of "helping Mgabe and his 8 children", however. Things might be different in the UK.

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2015 May 05 13:55
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Post: #24
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 05 02:50)Gamera Wrote:  Same reason why, at the same time, they give financial support to neoclassical theory and libertarian thought at Faculties of Economics all around the world:

That is raising an interesting question, though. If they are giving money to both, who is their favorite pet? Do you consider the current system, and lets talk aboute the EU and the US, as a free market, free trade oriented, economically liberal system?

"Whoever says that he "belongs to his time" is only saying that he agrees with the largest number of fools at that moment." - Nicolás Gómez Dávila

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2015 May 05 17:37
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Mustapaita
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Post: #25
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 05 13:55)Temnozor Wrote:  Also, above you have mentioned the poor, but if I think about it, here where I live, most poor people or those on the dole are immigrants (being rather poor and a non-native myself). They are the greatest and most useless burden on the welfare system. Europe has had nice social market economies (Germany being the best example) before it was flooded by aliens. Now it hasn't, so I guess there is some correlation. As for now, by "helping the poor" and "increasing welfare" I mostly think of "helping Mgabe and his 8 children", however. Things might be different in the UK.

Many of those older immigrants came to work so European states could keep living the good life without having to feed the labour market with native offspring. Now, instead of gastarbeiters, we have uncontrolled migration of people that to a great degree are unfit for the labour markets of European economies with the same motivation as before. So we're doublefucked. Cuts will come, but will jobs? Cuts means lay-offs in Europe because of the sizeable state machinery. Is there a way out of this mess without going third world: nuclear, is my question.

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2015 May 05 18:00
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Post: #26
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  Same reason why, at the same time, they give financial support to neoclassical theory and libertarian thought at Faculties of Economics all around the world:
I don't know on which planet you live, but libertarian thought not only is not much sponsored, it is villified almost everywhere, particularly because of the small goverment policies it promotes. Just look at the witchhunt on Farage in Great Britain as an example.

(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  it serves oligarchic interest the best.
It absolutely doesn't, libertarian thought opposes economic cronyism and settling private invoices with taxpayers' money - latter is exactly the reason why the plutocrats and the left cooperate this well together despite calling each other political enemies in public - because they have a common interest in milking the taxcattle and prevent national self determination and people's sovereignty.

(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  A deregulated, free market society with progressive elements here and there, effectively masking the true nature of our elite's material and spiritual dominance over the social body. It is the economic base which determines what superstructure may bring about, not the other way around. Reinforcing that kind of leftism, "mainstream leftism" let's call it, simply works as a condition for active consent by those dominated. It also legitimizes a never-ending influx of the so-called "reserve army of labour" from underdeveloped countries; an infinite source of cheap labor in the hands of big capital, mechanically cheapening labor cost in its entirety in any given society.

There is no such thing like a deregulated free market society, just look at the billions paid to nationalized US carmakers (and compare how the alleged democratic socialist paradise Sweden handled it), just look how massively failing banks were supportied - with whose money was it done again? You totally miss the point of liberty, one can't live in freedom and democracy if there is no budget control and a ban on public (sic!) debts, it however doesn't take much to corrupt and bribe the beer & football proles to make them support this kind of policy as they will be happy for any breadcrumb left over for them. As for cheap labour, you're right except we have millions of unemployed natives already and most of the new arrivals are welfare leeches, not cheap labour.

(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  This is, of course, a deeply contradictory system of thought, and is the reason why I detest most of the European mainstream left: they embody this contradiction in its highest political form. It is the very reason why over here it is not uncommon to call European leftists "walking contradictions", and to take American so-called "socialists" as a joke.

Why is Bernie Sanders still promoting this joke though?

(2015 May 04 22:16)Gamera Wrote:  Yet, I digress. My point is that by no means any of this implies that all theories the mainstream left currently holds up are inherently against any particular country's ethos. Some have achieved significant progress for a nation, the most conspicuous example being universal healthcare. And it is redistribution through mechanisms such as progressive taxation (if well-implemented) which sustains a healthy, ever-increasing patrimonial middle-class, preventing the concentration of wealth in a few hands.

Anybody can take away money from subjects that pay health insurance contribution and redistribute it to other subjects and call it a success.
Undoubtedly the past social policides were very successful, but this is in a state of erosion since decades.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folkhemmet
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ordoliberalism

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2015 May 05 18:52
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Post: #27
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
Looking more like Scandinavia? Does that mean more economic freedom? According to the Heritage institute, a right-wing think tank, the Nordics are economically freer than the US in most areas, except the size of government and taxes.

http://www.heritage.org/index/

Scandinavia is probably the place in the world where you'd expect the welfare state to have the least bad effects. Until recently they were rich, homogeneous societies with a famously strong work ethic. But 20 or so years ago even the Nordics started reforming their governments and reducing taxes.

America actually already has a pretty big welfare state. Last time I checked, the American government spends 40% of the nation's GDP. In Sweden or Denmark that is 50%. The majority of US health spending is now by the US government (Medicare, Medicaid, Obamacare subsidies) Almost half of Americans live in an household receiving a government benefit.

The already existing American welfare state hasn't been a success - rather, more of a failure, is the answer really to expand it?

PS I'm not against any welfare state at all, but it needs to be massively changed to make people more responsible, both for themselves and their family. There's far too many people who believe someone's elses' hard earned money belongs to them. I admire countries like Singapore for the systems they've set up that provide a safety net of sorts, but reward success.
2015 May 06 16:05
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Post: #28
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 05 02:02)Osweo Wrote:  I haven't really been paying attention to this debate, but what's that picture about above? What's she got on her wrist?

She said in the blog that her visit to the hospital didn't involve broken bones or a fever, and since the colors on hospital wristbands aren't universally standardized, I don't think it involves a limb. My guess is that she had a UTI; very uncomfortable, but not a medical emergency. Even in Finland, patients are seen in order of urgency, not in the order of arrival, and one can spend hours in an emergency room if there are more urgent cases.
2015 May 06 16:14
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Post: #29
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
(2015 May 05 13:55)Temnozor Wrote:  Yeah, fuck the people who earn money and give it to those who don't, amirite? You know, redistribution of wealth is not the only way to improve the poor's living. And probably there are ways to do so without creating massive state bureaucracies and fucking over the economy.

It is. You mean how you redistribute that wealth. But the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few has fucked over the economy. The deregulation of the financial sector has fucked over the economy. To earn money somebody has got to be willing to pay for it. Last government to shill the idea the poor's living standards being raised with rising inequality and a small state left the poorest less wealthy than before.

Quote:Before discussing the need of increasing or decreasing the welfare spending, we should first look on how the funds we have now are being allocated. And a lot of it is being spent on bullshit from what I see, brown people included. So this rather implies a necessity of cuts in the first place. Whether certain areas need an increase in funding can be evaluated afterwards, but feeding the welfare machinery without a proper recoordination to actually meaningful needs will result in a bottomless pit. And it will drag on the middle class, which is already shrinking anyway.
You missed my point. Of course, I'm coming from the UK perspective here. The welfare costs are higher because of the level of unemployment. The shrinking of the middle class. The squeeze on income. Only a tiny amount of welfare spending is on the unemployed (Yet the right wing press plays it up a lot singling out some particularly shameless scum bags to whip up anti-welfare sentiment).

If employers paid the living wage the government would have to spend less on welfare. That tax money could be spent better elsewhere or the rates reduced.

People in the UK have started using Poundland filling repair kits and dodging the dentist (NHS dentistry is mostly not 'free') to be able to afford food and the likes. With even worse of a state of wealth inequality and unemployment just taking away the welfare state would (maybe you are not arguing this, but I'm also responding to at least one other poster) exacerbate our problems. In this small example manky teeth put off employers. The state is regressing to the days of Rowntree and Dickens.

The welfare state shouldn't be reduced in cost by dismantling it (of course there is mismanagement of spending to work on to) but by reducing the need for it.

Quote:Also, above you have mentioned the poor, but if I think about it, here where I live, most poor people or those on the dole are immigrants (being rather poor and a non-native myself). They are the greatest and most useless burden on the welfare system. Europe has had nice social market economies (Germany being the best example) before it was flooded by aliens. Now it hasn't, so I guess there is some correlation. As for now, by "helping the poor" and "increasing welfare" I mostly think of "helping Mgabe and his 8 children", however. Things might be different in the UK.
I wish all the foreigners would be gotten rid of.;) But I rue the day this line of thinking comes as common as in America where attacking welfare and the public sector is aligned with dogwhistle racism as system justification. The claims that it is all the fault of the undeserving poor also.

But I guess here at least we have already had that kind of American influenced small state politics (Thank Allah she is dead). Although even Milton Friedman proposed his ideas for a "negative income tax". Welfare spending increased under Thatcher to - due to the massive growth of unemployment - and then returned to the same level as when she took office. There is a whole bunch of failures of the individualist small state ideology based reforms.

The massive deficit here was not because of government spending (although the deficit was getting a little high when Alistair Darling became chancellor, but New Labour was just Thatcherism relaxed) but the 2008 financial crisis.

There is a reason why deregulated modern states apparently "don't exist". They don't work. They are an ideological pipe dream much akin to "full communism". Although the Communists at least have some sense in that they believe in the material needs (removing proletarian reliance on the bourgeoisie) of the individual to be free (of course there is the contradiction with the Bolshevik/Stalinist state).

Capital needs redistributing. Cuts will not do that. Instability will remain, even if the economy recovers regardless.

Now, if something was put into place that the welfare state only needed to be much smaller and capital was spread more evenly through the population through some sort of system? Great. But it will not happen through cuts.

Germany can't keep up it's 'negro-and-bicycle" state, or perhaps a "westerner-and-car" state forever either. There has been/is quite a few affordable South Korean cars owned by family members. ;)

An apparently bloated welfare state is not the problem - it is a symptom. A crisis caused by Neoliberalism (the drive for deregulation and shrinking of the public sector) has bizarrely resulted in a widespread argument for more of the same.

(2015 May 05 18:52)Aptrgangr Wrote:  I don't know on which planet you live, but libertarian thought not only is not much sponsored, it is villified almost everywhere, particularly because of the small goverment policies it promotes. Just look at the witchhunt on Farage in Great Britain as an example.
No it isn't. That is on race and immigration. Can't interrupt the stream of foreign fodder to the factory floors. Did you not know we have had a Conservative government (hardly unsupported by rich and powerful figures) that campaigned on a psuedo-left "Big Society" concept? In reality it was plans to shrink the state and tell everyone to get on with it themselves. ;)

Cameron's hope that the "big society" will replace Big Government is reminiscent of the old Marxist belief that the state will "wither away" as a result of victorious socialism. We all know how that turned out. Cameron has a long way to go to convince us that his vision is any less utopian. - George Eaton, New Statesman 2010

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(This post was last modified: 2015 May 06 23:17 by Surtr Kvlt.)
2015 May 06 21:37
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Post: #30
RE: Bernie Sanders: America Should Look More Like Scandinavia
The 'Problem' With Bernie Sanders

Submitted by Yonathan Amselem via The Mises Institute,

Bernie Sanders’s entry into the presidential race has sparked a nationwide conversation about socialism and its potential to remedy the real and perceived pathologies suffered by Americans. Throughout Sanders’s extensive political career, he has proudly labeled himself a socialist while being careful to distance his ideological roots from basket cases such as North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela, Bolivia, and other collectivist nightmares. Rather, as with most progressive socialists, he considers himself a “democratic” socialist sharing more in common with the relatively wealthy Scandinavian countries.

It is interesting that progressives like Sanders can look at a rich country like Sweden and automatically conclude that the nation’s high living standards do not result from a laissez-faire past, low levels of national debt, monetary independence, no centrally mandated minimum wage, strong legal protection of property rights, a level-headed central bank, low corporate tax rates, or even Sweden’s gradual move toward more privatization in healthcare, social security, and education. Rather, progressives naturally assume that Sweden’s high living standards are a product of their high taxes and nationalized industries.

But, imagine if LeBron James took up smoking. Any success on the court would be despite his destructive habit not because of it. Sweden’s economic success has come in spite of its socialism. (...)

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-10-18...ers?page=2

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2015 Nov 03 01:51
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