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timschochet

Democratic Socialism

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56 minutes ago, NFL2DF said:

Nice timing on this thread.

Yesterday a supporter of the Democratic Socialists of America threatened on Twitter to shoot up an event at the Trump Hotel in DC.

Sounds like a great group.

Awesome contribution, Alex!

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59 minutes ago, fantasycurse42 said:

The party stance was stay in the EU, that is a fact and not up for debate. 

No one has at any point argued with that statement.

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1 hour ago, HellToupee said:

Here’s the problem for me . Very slippery slope from “ wealthy” to working man

No, it’s not. Every generation before this one had no problem making the distinction.  

 

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8 minutes ago, proninja said:

If your taxes went up by 10 percent and your medical expenses went down by 15 percent of total income, I'd expect you to be excited to pay more taxes. 

Down 15% of total income, sure, down 15% of medical expenses, no. I’d actually have to dive into the numbers to be sure, but napkin math sends me in this direction.

 

38 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

No one has at any point argued with that statement.

All I’m getting at is the Labour Party in the UK might not have been a good example. You don’t want to concede that, so we’ve arrived at an impasse.

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1 hour ago, Amused to Death said:

Hmmm, you called a person is entitled if they'd rather get more for their taxes than pay for an endless war.   I pointed out we've spent over $5.5 trillion for a war.  I'd rather get something else for my money, even if that makes me entitled in your eyes.

This post is the definition of creating your own narrative.

Edited by fantasycurse42

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Even if all their party views are incredibly on point and would be amazing for everyone, they shot themselves in the foot with their branding from day one.  A party with the word socialism in it will have a difficult time gaining widespread support in the USA, imo.

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9 minutes ago, shader said:

Even if all their party views are incredibly on point and would be amazing for everyone, they shot themselves in the foot with their branding from day one.  A party with the word socialism in it will have a difficult time gaining widespread support in the USA, imo.

I’ve always thought so. History would indicate it. The New Deal was basically the Socialist Party platform of the 1920s, adopted by FDR. But he called it progressivism, not socialism. 

But we could be wrong. Times are changing and perhaps the old labels no longer have their power for good or ill. 

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40 minutes ago, fantasycurse42 said:

This post is the definition of creating your own narrative.

Creating my own narrative because I'd rather my taxes pay for my insurance instead of a  $5 trillion war? :shrug: Ok, call me entitled. 

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1 hour ago, fantasycurse42 said:

Down 15% of total income, sure, down 15% of medical expenses, no. I’d actually have to dive into the numbers to be sure, but napkin math sends me in this direction.

 

All I’m getting at is the Labour Party in the UK might not have been a good example. You don’t want to concede that, so we’ve arrived at an impasse.

Do you agree that Brexit was not a vote about socialist (democratic or otherwise) economic policies?

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4 hours ago, avoiding injuries said:

No, thank you. Show me where it’s working. 

Don't know if this layup was taken, but seems rather simple.  Our K/12 education system and medicare.  This is of course assuming that "working" means people like it and actively participate in it.

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Strongly opposed across the board, however if we get these policies, we need massive tax increases on the middle class to preserve some relationship between the benefits people receive and the price they pay.  

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3 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

Norway: 5 million

Finland: 5 million

Sweden: 10 million

Denmark: 6 million

Iceland: 350,000

The Netherlands: 17 million

New Zealand: 4 million

Australia: 24 million

there goes Henry, playing with his numbers again

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2 minutes ago, Soonerman said:

Strongly opposed across the board, however if we get these policies, we need massive tax increases on the middle class to preserve some relationship between the benefits people receive and the price they pay.  

Why do you think it’s so important for there to be a relationship between what you get and what you pay?  We don’t (explicitly) do that with most government services.  

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3 hours ago, urbanhack said:

Or people who think they are more like (or want to be like) the wealthy and thus adopt the same outlook as them.

“Temporarily embarrassed millionaire syndrome”

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3 hours ago, proninja said:

Everyone knows that economies of scale mean that things for a smaller population are cheaper.

I'm old enough to remember when the GOP's solution for healthcare costs was expanding markets across state borders in order to create larger pools.  

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2 minutes ago, fatguyinalittlecoat said:

Why do you think it’s so important for there to be a relationship between what you get and what you pay?  We don’t (explicitly) do that with most government services.  

Your state doesn’t bar the poor from using north/south streets? Or the middle class can only drive on the public roads between 7 am and 9 pm?

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Just now, Dickies said:

I'm old enough to remember when the GOP's solution for healthcare costs was expanding markets across state borders in order to create larger pools.  

I’m old enough to remember when their solution was to require everyone to buy insurance. 

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6 minutes ago, fatguyinalittlecoat said:

Why do you think it’s so important for there to be a relationship between what you get and what you pay?  We don’t (explicitly) do that with most government services.  

Because this is a whole different animal.  If we want Scandinavian benefits, we should pay Scandinavian tax rates, about 60% on income over $60K.

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3 hours ago, Amused to Death said:

I think this is where the Dems have to refine their message.  Its not just a tax increase, its offset by the expenses you WON'T have to pay.  I'll gladly pay 50% more in income taxes if that means I don't have to pay my insurance premium and deductibles.  I still come away with more money in my pocket without the headaches that comes from fighting insurance companies.

So much this.  I would gladly pay higher taxes for universal healthcare if it meant I don't have to deal with paying my health insurance premiums right now.  Renewing the insurance is always a giant headache and I never know what kind of massive bill I am going to get when I see the doctor.  I'd pay more for the simplicity of universal healthcare even though the most recent study showed it would cost us less.

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4 hours ago, Maurile Tremblay said:

This seems to be the fault of the Democratic Socialists. They should call themselves something that doesn't already have a Wikipedia entry inconsistent with how they're using the term.

"Democratic Socialists" in the United States should follow the lead of the Scandinavian countries, or Australia and New Zealand, or Canada ... all of whom have governments kind of similar to what it seems like Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez et al. want, and none of whom call themselves "Democratic Socialists."

Exactly.  

I am guessing that if you took 10,000 people and showed them just that platform for a candidate, 50%+ would say they would vote for that platform.  If you took another 10K people and asked them if they would vote for a Democratic Socialist, the number who would for that candidate would drop quite a bit.  Socialist has been demonized way too much in public discourse.  

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4 hours ago, fantasycurse42 said:

I don't know for facts, however, it is a logical assumption when you start playing with numbers. 

Go ahead and show your numbers.

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3 hours ago, fatguyinalittlecoat said:

Right, I understand the argument but the messaging is not easy.  A large percentage of people in the U.S. intensely mistrust the government.

You should listen to the latest Freakonomics podcast.  It talks about the entrepreneurial nature of government and how many of today's innovations can be directly linked to government projects, but our government does a poor job of getting a return on their investment.  

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3 hours ago, fatguyinalittlecoat said:

Nordic Countries also have higher individual tax rates.  That's a big part of the challenge of getting this stuff off the ground here.

That's because we suck at math.  I am guessing in the long run, having higher taxes still would cost less for individuals vs. all the costs of college, medical bills, etc.    Not to mention the familiar damage the war on drugs and the mass incarceration rates have.  The public doesn't want to hear that stuff, they just hear "higher taxes" and dig their heels in.  

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3 hours ago, HellToupee said:

Here’s the problem for me . Very slippery slope from “ wealthy” to working man

Come on, it's not that hard to distinguish from people making millions a year vs somebody making 50K or so.   

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1 hour ago, Short Corner said:

Go ahead and show your numbers.

He can’t play with them in public.  They’re under 18. 

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2 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

Do you agree that Brexit was not a vote about socialist (democratic or otherwise) economic policies?

Obviously I agree, but that’s strawman, and you’re better than that.

I simply disagreed with your example of the UK/Laubor Party. There were def eliments that the stay side generally agreed on, some of which are in the OP. UK didn’t just vote to stay or go, these people came out and voted like that bc they were pissed off, do you agree with that? 

My opinion is pretty obvious here; if looking at just 1/5 the scale of the US, and you reference the Labour Party, that’s a bad example, more than half the country just voted against something they backed and wanted. Clearly something isn’t working in the system. 

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12 minutes ago, fantasycurse42 said:

Obviously I agree, but that’s strawman, and you’re better than that.

 

Have you read the thread title?

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37 minutes ago, fantasycurse42 said:

Obviously I agree, but that’s strawman, and you’re better than that.

I simply disagreed with your example of the UK/Laubor Party. There were def eliments that the stay side generally agreed on, some of which are in the OP. UK didn’t just vote to stay or go, these people came out and voted like that bc they were pissed off, do you agree with that? 

My opinion is pretty obvious here; if looking at just 1/5 the scale of the US, and you reference the Labour Party, that’s a bad example, more than half the country just voted against something they backed and wanted. Clearly something isn’t working in the system. 

It’s not a strawman.  We’re discussing whether the economic idea of democratic socialism works, and the example you’re giving is something endorsed by a bunch of democratic socialists, but isn’t itself democratic socialism. 

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Just imagine being a person that hates it when other people have...

 

A chance to see a doctor

An education

A place to live

A fair shake in our justice system

A clean planet to give their children

 

 

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Why are people arguing over the name? I care more about their goals and what they will do to accomplish them.

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32 minutes ago, Dedfin said:

Why are people arguing over the name? I care more about their goals and what they will do to accomplish them.

Because it's not socialism in the traditional sense (nobody is advocating for the government controlling production).  Social Democrats would be a more accurate label.

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3 hours ago, KarmaPolice said:

Come on, it's not that hard to distinguish from people making millions a year vs somebody making 50K or so.   

I agree with that but it starts at a million and the next time thing you know they determine 500k, then 250 and finally 150k. It’s how things work, it becomes the have and have nots. Slippery that slope.

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9 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

Norway: 5 million

Finland: 5 million

Sweden: 10 million

Denmark: 6 million

Iceland: 350,000

The Netherlands: 17 million

New Zealand: 4 million

Australia: 24 million

Canada: 35 million. 

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3 hours ago, Dickies said:

Because it's not socialism in the traditional sense (nobody is advocating for the government controlling production).  Social Democrats would be a more accurate label.

Which a lot of political parties in Europe have adopted as their monicker.

 

Edited by msommer

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2 hours ago, zoonation said:
12 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

Norway: 5 million

Finland: 5 million

Sweden: 10 million

Denmark: 6 million

Iceland: 350,000

The Netherlands: 17 million

New Zealand: 4 million

Australia: 24 million

Canada: 35 million.

And I find it interesting that in at least the European countries on this list (and I might add German, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal to the list but unsure of the definitions that landed these countries on this list) is that the discourse is not if the welfare net, the free/unpaid (cash from bank account) access to medical care and education is required. It is a given that the non fringe accept and move on with. There are discussions on degrees of which service is available, cost benefit etc, but very few, if any, in the mainstream are discussing dismantling the whle thing and thereby lowering the taxes.

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13 hours ago, TobiasFunke said:

All due respect,  but we seem to be getting off track here.  Critics said democratic socialism doesn't work, they were given counterexamples, and then you dismissed the relevance of those counterexamples due to the size of those countries. But why does their relatively small size (largest is 24 million if we eliminate the UK example altogether) invalidate them?  We can't we replicate their model on a larger scale? It seems to me and some other people that we can, and I think the burden is on you to explain why we're wrong about that.

If New York had a law that improved the lives of the average New Yorker, nobody would just dismiss the idea of implementing it nationally due to the size difference. In fact, as I pointed out earlier conservatives used to use this possibility as one of their primary arguments for state's rights. What's changed? Why can't we implement the Nordic Model in America?

We can try, but advocates of that should point out that the Nordic model includes massive taxes on the middle class.  They have the US equivalent of a 60% tax on income starting at $60K.  Plus a VAT.

We should also point out that there are huge cultural differences between the Nordic countries and the US.  And massive global responsibility differences.  And yes, size of population and territory matter as well.

This is a common failing of the left.  Overestimating the ability of bureaucrats to implement programs like this and underestimating the unintended consequences of doing so.

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9 hours ago, KarmaPolice said:

Come on, it's not that hard to distinguish from people making millions a year vs somebody making 50K or so.   

The Nordic countries tax the people making "50K or so" way more heavily than the US does.

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9 hours ago, KarmaPolice said:

Exactly.  

I am guessing that if you took 10,000 people and showed them just that platform for a candidate, 50%+ would say they would vote for that platform.  If you took another 10K people and asked them if they would vote for a Democratic Socialist, the number who would for that candidate would drop quite a bit.  Socialist has been demonized way too much in public discourse.  

For good reason.  Lots of demons have taken up that name and cause.

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I feel like this thread needs some definitions of what words actually mean in this context....sort of like all the times we've had to define what "evidence" is and means.

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12 hours ago, Soonerman said:

Strongly opposed across the board, however if we get these policies, we need massive tax increases on the middle class to preserve some relationship between the benefits people receive and the price they pay.  

So I've thought a bit about this post overnight and I think the reason it stuck out to me is that it seems completely antithetical to why I support this platform.  My personal belief is that the government should be in the business of redistributing wealth and opportunity from rich to poor.  One of the problems right now is that large segments of the population can't afford to buy decent health care and college educations without going into debt.  If we insist on a relationship between benefits and payment, then that either means the payments for those people will be unaffordable or the benefits will suck.  I don't want a close relationship between the amount of taxes and the amount of benefits a person receives -- I want wealthier people to be subsidizing the benefits for poorer people.

Now, if the math works out such that middle class people pay a 60% tax rate, that's OK for me.  As long as wealthy people are paying a significantly higher tax rate and poor people are paying a significantly lower tax rate.  And as long as the benefits are received based on need rather than on tax contributions.

 

Edited by fatguyinalittlecoat
Why is it a good day when Mama cooks the breakfast with no hog? I would have thought the opposite.
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2 hours ago, Soonerman said:

We can try, but advocates of that should point out that the Nordic model includes massive taxes on the middle class.  They have the US equivalent of a 60% tax on income starting at $60K.  Plus a VAT.

We should also point out that there are huge cultural differences between the Nordic countries and the US.  And massive global responsibility differences.  And yes, size of population and territory matter as well.

This is a common failing of the left.  Overestimating the ability of bureaucrats to implement programs like this and underestimating the unintended consequences of doing so.

Couple things here.  First, a link would be helpful.  If you'd provided one people could see that the 60% tax to which you refer is a marginal tax rate, not a tax on all income, that it's not across the board (only Denmark is that high), and that the number includes payroll taxes which means it's not that much higher than the pre-GOP tax cut highest marginal rate of 46.9% in the US. None of this was clear from your phrasing. Second, there's no rule that says we have to follow their taxation model just because we want to borrow from their model; in fact we shouldn't because our upper class is far more wealthy to the point that it's frankly surreal. We could generate tax revenue equal to that of the entire country of Norway just by taking 70% of Jeff Bezo's wealth ... and he'd still have $50 billion left to play with. Third, as others have already discussed, taxpayers also would save a ton of money on a variety of things, most notably health insurance which last time I checked is pretty expensive.

As for the cultural differences- I agree, that's what this thread and thousands of other discussions around the country are about.  Changing our mentality for the better.  And yes, we have more "global responsibilities," but that doesn't mean we can just dismiss the idea out of hand without taking a look at the math.  Maybe we can raise enough revenue to cover these things without needing drastic cuts to our military and foreign aid budgets.  As for the rest, I'm still waiting for an explanation as to why population and geography matter.

On the final point- it's not the 1980s any more. We've tried deregulation in various industries, with mixed results at best. People see that medicare and medicaid and social security and environmental enforcement and banking oversight etc etc etc are good and helpful programs, that government agencies are staffed with normal hardworking people (a disproportionate number of them vets) who care about the country and their mission. They see that for-profit businesses would happily grind the middle class into paste for a small bump in their stock price. They saw poorly regulated capitalism almost destroy the nation in 2007-2009 only to be rescued by the government and the taxpayers. They've seen the useless sacks of horse manure that have risen to the top of our current economic model now that Trump has graciously put them all on display in his administration and realized that our meritocracy is a farce. Reaganesque scare tactics about the bureaucracy are way past their expiration date.

Edited by TobiasFunke
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4 hours ago, msommer said:

Which a lot of political parties in Europe have adopted as their monicker.

 

It’s over a 100 year old monicker. There were social Democrats in Europe before World War I. 

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4 hours ago, msommer said:

And I find it interesting that in at least the European countries on this list (and I might add German, France, Italy, Spain, Portugal to the list but unsure of the definitions that landed these countries on this list) is that the discourse is not if the welfare net, the free/unpaid (cash from bank account) access to medical care and education is required. It is a given that the non fringe accept and move on with. There are discussions on degrees of which service is available, cost benefit etc, but very few, if any, in the mainstream are discussing dismantling the whle thing and thereby lowering the taxes.

Well, sure.  You’d have to be some kind of monster to think poor people don’t deserve food or medical care. 

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1 hour ago, The Commish said:

I feel like this thread needs some definitions of what words actually mean in this context....sort of like all the times we've had to define what "evidence" is and means.

I anticipated there would be some contention about the term “Democratic socialism”. That’s why the first post contains the actual platform of Ocasio-Cortez, so that we would have a specific set of issues to discuss. 

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16 hours ago, fantasycurse42 said:

And let this generation of entitled babies destroy us? 

 

as opposed to the generation of entitled (now) old people who put $20 trillion onto the backs of these entitled babies?  

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53 minutes ago, jomar said:

as opposed to the generation of entitled (now) old people who put $20 trillion onto the backs of these entitled babies?  

My generation is the worst, we're the participation trophy generation - did those even exist until 15-20 years ago?

Also, assume you're talking about Boomers when you say old people? $16 of our $21T in debt has happened over the last 18 years, I'd think you'd want to point a finger at Gen X if you are making this argument of fiscal irresponsibility. 

 

Edited by fantasycurse42

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