links for 2010-02-08

  1. Body in Mind | Capitalism saves beautiful women

    There was probably some misrepresentation of the collectivist position in there somewhere. I wasn't really paying attention. (NSFW!-nudity)

  2. World Socialist Web Site | Rio Tinto Borax locks out 570 California mine workers

    Socialists have a love/hate relationship with management. When they are working under management, management is the villain because it exploits the workers. When management does not allow them to work because they refuse to sign an exploitive contract, management is again the villain for declining to exploit the workers. The attitude is summed up well in this statement: "Merrilees added, '[Mgmt] want[s] to be able to pick and choose who works, who doesn’t, who gets promoted, who gets raises and who gets what jobs,' He said, 'To their credit, people are standing up and saying, 'Enough is enough….'" What seems to be a fairly fundamental and necessary managerial task is unacceptable to Merilees. Merilees apparently believes that management should be prohibited from paying and retaining workers on the basis of individual worker productivity. To me, this is unfair. More productive workers should be paid more and have greater opportunity for promotion than less productive workers.

  3. World Socialist Party (US) | “Socialism is Illogical and Irrational”

    Another incarnation of the old "corporatists masquerading as libertarians" shtick. I used to write on a forum where I would argue from the libertarian perspective, and in response I would receive a lecture on the misdeeds of "corporatists masquerading as libertarians". I would say: "Look, I agree with you that corporatists masquerading as libertarians are evil, but that's not response to my argument. My argument is a libertarian one." Here, Alan Fenn evades true free-market arguments by presuming that all free-market capitalists scorn big government in public while "creaming" big bucks from government contracts and bailouts. I've never heard a kind word about bailouts from any of my preferred free-market news sources. Fenn then cites Chomsky's critique of World Bank policy as if that is some sort of argument against the free market. Dude, the last thing true free-market capitalists want is a "World Bank". When Fenn isn't evading capitalist arguments, he is misrepresenting them.

  4. World Socialist Party (US) | The market versus cooperation

    I do not understand how the market thwarts the type of universalist co-operation described here. There is no obligation to participate in the market. Those who are concerned about the myriad of details associated with some product, or the working conditions under which the same was produced, need not buy it. Let them co-operate their own products and services into existence. Also, it shouldn't take more than a moment's thought to understand why some work days are more valuable than others. The more a worker produces something that is actually in demand, and the more rare the skill needed to produce it, the more valuable that worker's job will be. Lastly, I do not recognize a "right" to food, clothing, shelter, and dignity. These things come about not through nature's bounty, but through the productive efforts of other people. No one has a "right" to the fruits another's labor.

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