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To What Extent Does Gov't Control Of Economy Lead To Poverty? (Warning: Another Capitalism Q)

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Jan 1 in Politics & Government ✌ by Virginia (7,403 points)

I was looking through previous questions about North Korea, and came upon this interesting observation from Starchild: "Basically, the more government control a society has, especially over the economy, the less prosperous people there will tend to be in the long run."

http://www.ihavesolved.com/24551/south-korea-richer-north-korea-poorer-even-though-both-people#ixzz52yPUHuys
And yet, there is an almost universal belief that FDR 'saved' capitalism with his New Deal, bringing in huge government controls. And wasn't it the relaxing of those controls that is now leading to huge rich/poor gap and deepening poverty in the US? Plus a health-care fiasco, etc etc...
So, even acknowledging the oft-demonstrated truth of Starchild's comment with 20th century debacles of communism/socialism, what is the solution? And if we grant that some government control is needed, how to find the proper mix for greatest overall prosperity?

3 Answers

Rooster Jan 2

Geez! I can't even begin a decent answer to this.

We've all seen every kind of government there is around the world and some work and some do. Too much control usually leads to a dictatorship or National Socialism. I'm just hoping this country can stand together and beat this! I still believe that Democracy is best. Right now? Way too much government and control. Reduce the government and relinquish some power and let the people all prosper and enjoy life.

It would be almost ideal if it was like the 50's. I was just a kid but it was peaceful and I never heard any political arguments.

Virginia Rooster Jan 3

Thank you Rooster...maybe the answer is something we will have to discover...  

Things have gotten worse than I ever thought they could ever get here in the USA, but somehow I do think we will come through this, and peacefully too...looking through our history, this country does have a tremendous resilience, a dedication to freedom and we have made it through some AWFUL things in our past!

Marianne Jan 3

Sadly enough, history leaves many controversed records, various perspectives, analyses, and assumptions, as there was always a lack of transparency in all the economic, social, legal, moral and political systems.

It looks much as if with any system, the old strategy used by some of the most powerful clans, interest groups, leaders or despots still applies:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Divide_and_rule


You cite the Korean example:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Korean_War


But there are many other systems, which are, finally, increasing the gap between rich and poor, elites and the lower classes:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oligarchy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theocracy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crony_capitalism

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kleptocracy

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mafia_state


Virginia Marianne Jan 3

Marianne, on another of your links I noticed that Kim is actually opening N Korea to markets, and the economy is responding positively. Also, however, apparently he does use that "divide-and-rule" principle...even with his own family.

Marianne Marianne Jan 4

Yes, Virginia, indeed, and in every measure, he serves clearly his own personal interests.

Virginia Marianne Jan 4

Marianne, my clock for Geneva indicates 3 AM at your house...are you a night owl? :)  (Like me sometimes...<3)

Marianne Marianne Jan 4
Virginia Marianne Jan 6

Marianne, if you are inclined, will you look at the discussion O'Tink and I had under her answer for this Q? Do you have any direct knowledge or experience of the legal mandating of political correctness now throughout Europe? Tink posted an interesting article/opinion from the Washington Times.

Marianne Marianne Jan 8

Yes, Virginia; on my side, I wonder since long about how free speech can be defined, if people cannot make the difference between insults, hate-mongering, false accusations, slander, etc. promoting violence, and disagreeing with unfair, abusive systems, rulings, decisions and strategies.

And, depending on the sides and interests, or languages, educations, beliefs and mentalities, views, principles and values vary too much ...

Well, we are walking on eggshells here, but that's not new. Weren't we educated to be polite and respectful?


Virginia Marianne Jan 8

Walking on eggshells...that's not much fun!

Marianne Marianne Jan 8

Lol, indeed, and that slows down a lot. But education, in our times, was often too strict.

Virginia Marianne Jan 8

Overstrict education is not good, Marianne...

Marianne Marianne Jan 9

Yes, Virginia, it looks much like education into obedience without questioning orders and, with that, into dependence; many would compare all these flocks of obedient, submissive sheeple with useful idiots.



TheOtherTink Jan 4

Yes, in general, too much government control of the economy does lead to poverty, as in Venezuela or the former Soviet bloc. Compare West Germany with East Germany or North Korea with South Korea, for stark examples.

But what about the European democracies?  In France, for example, the government at various levels spends about 60% of the GDP, vs about 40% for the US.  But I notice a different kind of poverty emerging in Europe, namely, that speech the governing bureaucrats don't like is labeled "hate speech," and punished.

Punished selectively, that is, depending on the ethnicity of the speaker.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/swedens-free-speech-charade/

O'Tink, I could read the first part of the article before my computer froze...and it seems to be one of the huge challenges of our time to define 'free speech.' I am going to give your link another try, to see if I can get a bit more of that story...

Virginia, it's mostly about how in Sweden (not unique in Europe), political correctness has gone beyond social pressure to legal pressure. :ermm:

O'Kay, O'Tink...because I think you are now touching upon a massive concern with our civilization, maybe much of the world, even...the tendency to think there is some kind of absolute rightness about your own point of view.

So, we no longer burn people at the stake when they deviate from a certain narrow Christian doctrine (Catholic v. Anglican/protestant, for example), but we DO still tend to imbue our own PC views with a certain (questionable) credibility that somehow our standard is the absolute only correct one.

I have not myself found dividing lines which I trust, but do ponder substantially there; is this what your article is meaning, in extending social pressure to legal mandate?


Yes, Virginia, it is.  There are many laws in Europe against publicly saying things that could defame a race, religion or minority, a definition so broad that anyone could easily find himself in trouble.

https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/nov/29/the-canary-in-the-free-speech-coal-mine/

O'Tink the article conveyed I think the point you were trying to make, I think I understand...and maybe I will put a comment under Marianne here to see if she would like to bring in some direct experience?

Anyway, my own thoughts do lean toward, let's go to social pressure for this one, NOT trying to legally mandate the PC stuff, the line is not concrete enough too nebulous. But it's interesting because the Washington Times article, at first I was feeling put-off by that paper to print such inflammatory stuff, but then I checked the top and it is listed as an opinion! Things like comparing PC infection, and the waves of immigration, to the Bubonic Plague. 

But presenting these ideas as opinion changes things completely for me, so I went back to ponder the points the essayist was making...ended up agreeing with your idea of social pressure rather than legal mandate, at least for the moment.

And I DO appreciate learning about this, did not even realize such stuff was going into law in Europe...

Yes, Virgina, the opinion writer's opinion aside, the Wilders case in Holland was real enough.

And that kind of legal action is not limited to Europe.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2015/12/04/the-attorney-general-on-speech-that-edges-towards-violence-and-acts-of-anti-muslim-hatred-including-rhetoric/?utm_term=.39d425a7a8a3

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