Thread: Socialism
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      12-03-2019, 04:29 PM   #44
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Labels, especially when misused on all sides, just create more misunderstanding and division.

The following article does a reasonable job defining socialism vs. what some politicians are using to self describe themselves as "democratic socialists".

I don't know any pure socialists or supporters of pure socialism with centralized control over all industries. But I know a lot of left leaning folks who think unbridled or unregulated capitalism can sometimes lead to a threat to our democracy. Beyond a certain point, inequality tends to lead to cycles of increasing greed and political corruption... with the health care industry in the USA becoming a case in point. I agree with previous posts in this thread. It's not the fault of the vast majority of patients, nor physicians, but the layers of health insurance between the two.

Many of the symptoms the left leaning rail against could be solved by reintroducing enough regulation to increase market competition. Medicare for All may not be required to get health care costs and outcomes in line with the rest of the industrialized world's numbers. But we have to have sufficient government regulation at all levels to stop the current level of merger fever, and we need incentives at this point to, for example, get doctor's groups to start forming independent payment processes that get patient and physician closer, without a dozen layers of health insurance professionals between the two. There have been a few experiments in rural areas that look promising, but frequently politicians, bought out by industry, end up trying to shut down such experiments with lawsuits. Just like they did when a few small municipalities tried to offer cheap broadband to residents. In comes the ISP industry suing over unfair competition, and getting state or federal politicians to defend their obscene profit margins.

I admire AOC, Bernie, and similar politicians, but would never label any as true "socialists" or even close to any moderate "democratic socialists" like Salvador Allende back in the early 70s. Today's left in the USA is more like a throwback to FDR, with plans for government regulation and incentives to bring up the poor and lower middle class... admittedly at the expense of the top 1-5%. Most economists I've read say that's a better way to grow an economy than relying solely on trickle down and the austerity doctrines of a Thatcher or Reagan administration.