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Freedom

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MadArchitect

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Re: Freedom

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Niall: Now we can't do anything about those other destructive behaviours, but in the case of poverty, we would be able to negate the negative effects simply by providing universal free health and education services that were of the highest standards.I agree with you on a lot of points, but I'm not convinced that universal health care and a high level of public education would necessarily negate the effects of poverty. Nor do I think the adjective "simply" really applies here, as both of those things are difficult to implement. There's probably no magic bullet for the problems of poverty.
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Re: Freedom

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DH:Quote:I argue that it has yet to be established. This would require a society and economic system built upon particpatory principles and democratic practices. I've attempted to spell out some of the key values in this process (diversity, self-management, solidarity, reverence etc.) and some of the institutional practices (workplace and consumer councils). At this point I believe Public Policy reflects the interests of the Ruling Classes. This doesn't mean Public Policy is in their best interests either; in many cases it is in nobody's best interests and tragically set for terrible disaster. Dissident you have great ideas. I too find so much at fault in the current government of this country. However, I don't like democracies much either. As Chris said in his remark just above ( I agree) Democracies are mob rule whatever, the majority thinks is good I must do. I don't like that. I want my freedom so that I can decide everything that I do for myself. Now that may be utopic but it is simply what I want. I don't want anything that cost someone else. And I don't want to unvoluntarily take care of someone else. I have a good heart and so do most people. We live in the most generous society in the world. No, not all people are generous but I am to the extent that I can afford to be. And I want no one else telling me what to do with what is rightfully mind. I believe we need a society where we trust each other to do what is right for our neighbors and our own self-interest Edited by: Classical Celt at: 5/12/06 3:47 pm
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Chris OConnor

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Re: Freedom

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What if the majority decided that everyone whose name begins with the letter "M" should be taxed a little extra and prohibited from owning cars? Hey, it is the majority rule.
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Re: Freedom

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Quote:Chris: What if the majority decided that everyone whose name begins with the letter "M" should be taxed a little extra and prohibited from owning cars? Hey, it is the majority rule. Don't you guys feel childish when you say stupid shit like this?You can't argue effectively against DH, so you throw in a strawman to beat up on.
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Chris OConnor

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Re: Freedom

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My question isn't even remotely stupid. People use extreme examples to make points, so you ought to try to see the rather clear point being made with my question. Mob rules = barbaric. If the majority of people think something this doesn't mean their opinion should hold weight. Dissident ignored the question so I posted it again. I never once made the argument that Dissident thought everyone whose name begins with the letter "M" should be taxed higher, so I didn't erect and destroy a strawman. The question was presented as a means to make the point that a purely democratic world would be one in which I wouldn't want to live.
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Re: Freedom

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If the majority of people vote that those in the top 10% income bracket should pay 70% of their income in taxes would this be fair?
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Re: Freedom

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Quote:But it won't be free. Public education is subsidized by taxation. The demands of providing a top-notch education will invariably increase taxation. Poor families will, obviously, not be able to pay as much in taxes. The result is that money will be siphoned away from the more affluent -- not only the wealthy, but also those in the middle incomes -- to pay for the education of the poor. Unless someone finds a very clever way to offset that transition, it looks to me like that solution substitutes one form of financial inequality for another.Actually, this need not be. First, in your own country this could be done by reducing military expenditure, which is rather ridiculous. The second thing that you need to consider that this is an investment. It is not just giving money away. Graduates make a very powerful contribution to an economy. Once you get it off the ground in the first place, graduates (who tend to end up on higher rates of tax because they're well off) will probably be the people who end up financing the education of the current generation of students. And that's not to mention that providing citizens with a high standard of education will improve enterprise and lead to advances in technology, medicine and the like. Full of Porn*http://plainofpillars.blogspot.com
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Re: Freedom

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CCelt: However, I don't like democracies much either.I'd be interested if you could produce any examples of democracies in the sense I've labored to describe them. Actually, I'm not arguing for democracy alone: but for a kind of participatory model that follows particular values. I think it is democratic in the sense that people share in the power of decisions that impact their lives. CCelt: We live in the most generous society in the world.I'm sure you're aware that of the industrial nations of the world, per capita, our generosity is nothing to brag about. Meaning, if we were as generous as our wealth allowed, then we could pat ourselves on the back. I'm also sure you are aware of the collossal disproportion of consumption and waste in relation to US and other nations. We give a great deal: far more in weapons and waste than in wealth and welfare. I think it crucial that Americans demystify themselves of their global generosity, and wake up to the mountains of weaponry and garbage they are filling the planet with. That would be a start.CCelt: I want no one else telling me what to do with what is rightfully mine.I think this fits well with the values of Self-Management and Diversity that would be required in the kind of Participatory Society I'm describing. Individuals should be able to manage themselves and their course of action without external intrusion. Likewise, these courses of action should reflect a diversity of intelligences, tastes, imaginations and worldviews. The supreme challenge involves deciding what is rightfully yours, and at what time do these rights come into conflict with other values, and how should communities reconcile these conflicts of values. I think the Particpatory model I've offered provides the best framework for such decision making processes.
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Thinking about Freedom

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Quote:The basic idea of Anarchism is simple: no party, political or ideological group, placed above or outside the labouring masses to "govern" or "guide" them ever succeeds in emancipating them, even if it sincerely desires to do so. Effective emancipation can be achieved only by the direct, widespread, and independent action of those concerned, of the workers themselves, grouped, not under the banner of a political party or of an ideological formation, but in their own class organizations (productive workers' unions, factory committees, co-operatives, etc.) on the basis of concrete action and self-government, helped, but not governed by revolutionaries working in the very midst of, and not above the mass, in the professional, technical, defence, and other branches. VolineQuote:[N]othing promotes this ripeness for freedom so much as freedom itself. This truth, perhaps, may not be acknowledged by those who have so often used this unripeness as an excuse for continuing repression. But it seems to me to follow unquestionably from the very nature of man. The incapacity for freedom can only arise for a want of moral and intellectual powr; to heighten this power is the only way to supply the want; but to do this presupposes the exercise of the power, and this exercise presupposes the freedom which awakens spontaneous activity. William Von HumboltQuote:Rebellion is only an occasional reaction to suffering in human history; we have infinitely more instances of submission to authority than we have examples of revolt. What we should be most concerned about is not some natural tendency toward violent uprising, but rather the inclination of people faced with an overwhelming environment of injustice to submit to it. Historically, the most terrible things war, genocide, and slavery have resulted not from disobedience, but from obedience. Howard ZinnQuote:There is no such thing as a neutral educational process. Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate the integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity to it, or it becomes the practice of freedom - the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with the reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world. Paulo Freire
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