wes.whitman's blog

Social Democracy and Market Socialism

My views fall somewhere between social democracy and market socialism. What I have in mind by "market socialism" is the model advocated by Fred M. Taylor, Oskar Lange, and Abba Lerner. (This parallels the RICH economy proposal of Robert Anton Wilson too.)

Illogical Conservatism

Conservatism is illogical and inconsistent. When it comes to education, most conservatives have no objection to socialism. They are fine with sending their kids to public schools. At the same time, conservatives are fine with socialism when it comes to law-enforcement and the military. In fact, conservatives worship those socialist institutions. But when it comes to healthcare, though, they do an about face.

The Socialists Won The Economic Calculation Debate

Contrary to popular belief among Austrian School economists and right-libertarians, it is not readily apparent that the Austrians won the socialist calculation debate. The responses of Enrico Barone, Fred Taylor, Oskar Lange, and Abba Lerner were quite adequate. Most economists even thought that the socialists had won the debate.

Karl Marx: "I am not a Marxist!"

In 1883, Karl Marx wrote a letter to Paul Lafargue and Jules Guesde, the French Marxists, and accused them of denying the importance of reformist struggles. Marx had become more sympathetic to parliamentary politics as a tool for bettering the condition of workers and began to realize the importance of trade unionism for ameliorating the woes of the proletariat; and had begun the revision of Marxism that would ultimately be completed by Eduard Bernstein.

Policing and Slavery

Policing is a racist institution, rooted in slavery. The first police forces in America were runaway slave patrols. Later on, police were used to beat down striking workers—to force workers to work, to enslave them. And now the police system is still a runaway slave patrol, that arrests people for victimless crimes and throws them in jail to be slaves in the Prison Industrial Complex, because prison slave labor is a multi-hundred-billion dollar industry! There are no good cops because the institution itself is unjust. "The thing! The thing itself is the abuse!"

Policing Corrupts

It is a fact that giving someone a position of power or authority has serious psychological effects. It makes the person that wields power ignorant, hypocritical, immoral, violent, sociopathic, etc. Also, positions of power within hierarchies create situations in which almost any individual will commit any atrocity imaginable so long as they are told to do so by a superior. Also, conditions in which people are given arbitrary authority over others cause the wielder of authority to abuse their power and torture and mistreat those over whom they have power.

Social Democracy as Democratic Socialism

Social democracy, as a form of democratic socialism, is a great idea. The most free societies in the world embrace social democracy. Social democracy needs to be updated and reformed; a land value tax and basic income or social dividend is necessary for the society of tomorrow, so there's work to be done.

Replacing the Police and Military

A confederation of national guards would not lead to civil war. That would only be the case if the national guards were not confederated. What I'm advocating is handing over the regular military to the national guard, and having more local control. Have cross-training and coordination between the various national guards in the confederation, and allow soldiers to transfer from one national guard to another. But, at the same time, have the national guard(s) independent of the centralized State or federal government, to keep politics out of the military.

Libertarian Social Democracy

Integrating Libertarian Municipalism and Social Democracy

Social democracy, also known as evolutionary socialism or fabian socialism, is a variety of socialism that holds that representative democracy and universal suffrage will be the surest means of bringing about socialism.

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