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socialism in ancient world

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#1
If socialism failed in ancient world, why do they think it's going to work in the 21st century?


From FORTY CENTURIES OF WAGE AND PRICE CONTROLS by Robert LSchuettinger & Eamonn F. Buder

Ronlan governlnent bought supplies ofcorn or wheat in thnes ofshortage and re-sold theln to the people at a low fixed price.. Under the tribune Caius Gracchus the Lex Seinpronia Fruinentaria was adopted which allowed every ROlnan citizen the right to buy a certain alnount ofwheat at an official price lnuch lower than the luarket price. In 58 B.C. this law was "iInproved" to allow every citizen free wheat. The result, ofcourse, CaIne as a surprise to the govenllnent. Most of the fanners relnaining in the countryside siInply left to live in Rome without working.


In 45 B.C. Julius Caesar discovered that abnost one citizen in three was receiving his wheat at governinent expense. He luanaged to reduce this nluuber by about half, but it soon rose again; throughout the centuries ofthe elnpire ROine was to be perpetually plagued with this problelu of artifically low prices for grain, which caused econolnic dislocations ofall sorts.




They say Bernanke studied the Great Depression, I think he studied Diocletian -


Diocletian decided that deflation, reducing the costs of civil and Inilitary
governlnent, was iInpossible. On the other hand:
To inflate would be equally disastrous in the long run. It was
inflation that had brought the Elnpire to the verge of cOlnplete
collapse. The refonn ofthe currency had been ailned at checking
the evil, and it was becolning painfully evident that it could not
succeed in its .task.
It was in this seelningly desperate cirCUlnstance that Diocletian detenninedt~
continue to inflate, but to do so in a way that would, he thought, prevent the
inflation froln occurring. He sought to do this by silnultaneously fixing the prices of goods and services and suspending the freedonl ofpeople to decide what the official currency was worth~ The fmnous Edict of A.D. 301 was designed to accOlnplish this end. Its frmners were very lnuch aware of the fact that unless they could enforce a universal value for the denarius in. tenns of goods and
services - a value that was wholly out of keeping with its actual vahle - the
systeln that they had devised would collapse. Thus, the Edict was all pervasive
in its coverage and the penalties prescribed, severe.




Less than four years after the currency refonn associated with the Edict, the
price ofgold in tenns ofthe denarius had risen 250 percent. Diocletian had failed
to fool the people and had failed to suppress the ability ofpeople to buy and sell
as they saw fit. The failure ofthe Edict and the currency "reform" led to a return
to lnore conventional fiscal irresponsibility and by A.D. 305 the process of
currency debaselnent had begun again.
By the turn ofthe century this process had produced a two thousand percent
increase in the price of gold in tenns of denarii...



And that is how we know that Bernanke will fail.
 
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#2
Fast-forward to the 18th century, socialists are still trying to make socialism work. They fail and starve millions people to death - but they are working on it. Just need some more time. Some day the gov't wil figure out the right way to intervene in the economy. We just need to be patient with them.

Indian province of Bengal
The rice crop in 1770 failed cOlnpletely and fully a third ofthe population died. A nUlnber of scholars attribute this disaster prilnarily to the rigid policy of the
goverUlnent which was detennined to keep the price ofgrains down rather than
allow it to rise to its natural level. A price rise,. of course, would have been a
natural rationing systeln p~nnitting the available food to be stretched out until
the next harvest. Without this rationing systeln, the reserve supplies were
quickly consulned and Inillions died of hunger as a direct result.
 
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#3
Then early American communists tried to make communism work too. Didn't work out either. Crap. But they are still working on it. I believe by the time Obama leaves the office we'll have the recipe for how to intervene in the economy without causing it to collapse. They've been working on it since ancient Rome, the solution must be just behind the corner, don't you think so?

There was an attelnpt at about the same time to regulate trade
with the Indians... with the SaIne result. The price of
beaverskins [an ilnportant article oftrade at the tilne] was set at no
more than 6 shillings a skin with a "fair" profit of30 percent plus
cost of transportation. A shortage of corn, however, drove the
price ofthat cOlnlnodity up to 10 shillings "the strike," and sales of
this dwindling supply to the Indians were prohibited. "Under this
pressure, beaver advanced to 10 shillings and 20 shillings per
pound; "no corn, no beaver," said the natives. The Court was
obliged to relnove the fixed rate, and the price ruled at 20 shillings.
 
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#4
18th century France. The gov't hasn't figured out how to make communism work either. But they are working hard on it. A working communist economic system is just around the corner. We've been working on it for 4000 years, just a few more centuries of death and starvation and we'll figure it out.



Prices were to be based
upon those of 1790 at the place of production, plus one-third, plus a rate per
league for transportation plus 5 percent for the wholesaler and 10 percent for the
retailer. Local governlnents were given the right to cOInpel fanners to bring
their grain to Inarkets and to sell it at the fixed price. By the use ofthe anny and
police, enough fanners were physically transported (with their grain) to lnarketplaces
to enable the French people to survive the last 1110nths of1793 and the '
first Inonths of 1794.


Alarge black Inarket grew up all over France in response to the governlnent's
repeated attelnpts to control the prices offoodstuffs. Butter, eggs and Ineat, in
particular, were sold in slnall quantities door-to-door, lnainly to the rich. It was
ilnpossible to control this contraband trade and the net effect was to insure that
the wealthy had lnore than enough food while the poor were left to go hungry.


In some towns in the south the people were so badly fed that they
were collapsing in the streets frOln lack ofnourishlnent.


 
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#5
The failure of the medieval communists to make communism work shouldn't compromise the authority of modern communists in any way. President Obama is not like all past communists. He is different. He's an intellectual
 

AceNZ

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#6
Socialism works almost perfectly. Not for the masses, mind you, but for the people at the top; it gives them all of the control and power they could ever dream of. If you're in power lust, what better solution than to have a society that feels they have a duty to sacrifice to each other, with you in a position to determine or influence who gets sacrificed to who -- a fabulous all-against-all, with death to those who resist.
 

Nickelless

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#7
Fast-forward to the 18th century, socialists are still trying to make socialism work. They fail and starve millions people to death - but they are working on it. Just need some more time. Some day the gov't wil figure out the right way to intervene in the economy. We just need to be patient with them.
Then the first thing the government can take from me is this song dedication: :reddy:


The failure of the medieval communists to make communism work shouldn't compromise the authority of modern communists in any way. President Obama is not like all past communists. He is different. He's an intellectual
Well, he knows what he knows but not much else. Just because he's an expert at propagating Marxism doesn't mean he's qualified to be anything important.

Socialism works almost perfectly. Not for the masses, mind you, but for the people at the top; it gives them all of the control and power they could ever dream of. If you're in power lust, what better solution than to have a society that feels they have a duty to sacrifice to each other, with you in a position to determine or influence who gets sacrificed to who -- a fabulous all-against-all, with death to those who resist.
That reminds me of a quote by Mao:

"Every communist must grasp the truth, "Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun." Our principle is that the Party commands the gun, and the gun must never be allowed to command the Party.

I used to be surprised at the arrogance of socialists in general and Obama in particular. Now I'm just surprised that so many people continue to put up with it. At least Dems don't control the House until after Obama gets kicked out of office in two years.

 
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smilershouse

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#8
"Independent living"

Trusting oneself is all that one has in which to endure life.

The forefathers and pioneers believed this, and thus that philosophy made those nations great.

Those that sacrifice their freedom for security............................
deserve neither...............................But every individual has a right to protect ones self,. and their chattels from trespass with, or, without the court of law.

Its he way things should be.

SH
 

Russkie

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#9
Communism works great- when it is on the level of a small family, tribe or town, and completely voluntary.
 
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#10
Communism works great- when it is on the level of a small family, tribe or town, and completely voluntary.
That's not communism, that's a free market economy
With communism it would be,

"Communism works great- when it is on the level of a small family, tribe or town, and completely involuntary."
 
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#12
I see one simple problem with Socialism that leads to its failure. Producers get fed up with the forced supporting of parasites.
 

Fanakapan

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#13
Whilst there can be little doubt that the Marxian worldview will Never work, America seems to imagine the Converse of Socialism will work :) thats just muddled thinking.
 
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#14
Whilst there can be little doubt that the Marxian worldview will Never work, America seems to imagine the Converse of Socialism will work :) thats just muddled thinking.
It worked up until the 20th century and Progressivism.
 

smilershouse

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#15
I may be singing out of tune here, and correct me please.

My understanding of Communism begun with Ancient Babylonia, then Egypt, Assyria and so forth.

All empires that have risen and fallen have a couple of denominating factors. That is, the majority were all constructed by slaves working for the elitists rhythm. All fell because of either natural disasters, such as the drying up of the Nile, or, the fiat based money system, power and corruption of the ruling classes.

And the current commie empire will also fail, yet, that can only occur when people wake up and realise that they are slaves and that unless we learn about the past, history is deemed to repeat.

A final word, is that good book itself, claims that God will for once and for all, slay the (commie) Beast or Dragon, and the Whore that sittith as no widow upon the beast. That whore, I am inclined to believe, is Big Sis that we off today understand to be the Nihilist feminist movement of political correctness, that has corrupted the earth, and in turn works directly for the law makers and money changers, and, is also associated with the adulterous tribes that originally committed fornication with the secret societies of 'That evil city' of Babylonia. The lost 10 tribes of Israel???????Perhaps?

The multi headed beast, thus, requires interpretation, as to whether each head represents each sect of the secret societies that exist today? In any case, God has promised in Revelations, that the Babylonian power will once again rise, only this time, God is to destroy it once and for all with the help of a giant mill stone?????????Meteorite, Asteroid, who knows?

Whatever slams into rebuilt Babylonia, is said to drive the precious worth and the entire city so deep, it will never be found again. Interestingly, the land of Babylonia changed goobs some time back, and become Mesopotamia, and again into what we now understand as modern day Iraq. In fact, it is said that Saddam himself perceived himself as the reincarnated version king nebuchadnezzar, and one of Chuck Misslers DVD's of the occupying forces, flew around the salvaged renovation of Babylonia that Saddam himself constructed with HIS slaves. Seen here http://www.google.com.au/search?q=C...+site:youtube.com&spell=1&fp=73c7bc053ca04fbd.

With all this waffle, I'll get to the point of saying that the Bible is riddled with accounts to the cries of bondage which alerts images of oppression, slavery, cruelty, poverty and hence injustice for the masses, of which is Communism (or corporate socialism) as we understand it today.

The sad paradox of this being, is that no one wishes to be a volunteering slave unless into BDSM. But neither it seems, are people ready for ultimate freedom and accountability, and without govt intervention when things go wrong.

SH
 

Fanakapan

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#16
It worked up until the 20th century and Progressivism.
Yup, sure did, thats why we now have the spectacle of Goldman Sachs rewarding themselves for piss poor efforts even in a market of which they have such a share, that predicting its movement should be trivial :)

I guess its just a question of how one defines a parasite :) is it the guy down the road, sitting on his porch in a vest, or is it the guys up top who are destroying the Entire economy, and garnering a load of wedge whilst they do it ? :) Either type is a burden upon the productive, but the fellas at the top get to destroy the system a whole lot quicker than the Bum down the road.
 

Nickelless

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#17
I see one simple problem with Socialism that leads to its failure. Producers get fed up with the forced supporting of parasites.
So isn't it fitting that Obama has never had a job in which his salary wasn't paid by taxpayers?
 

citizenkane

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#18
Socialism works almost perfectly. Not for the masses, mind you, but for the people at the top; it gives them all of the control and power they could ever dream of. If you're in power lust, what better solution than to have a society that feels they have a duty to sacrifice to each other, with you in a position to determine or influence who gets sacrificed to who -- a fabulous all-against-all, with death to those who resist.
Change 3 words and it works this way too...

Capitalism works almost perfectly. Not for the masses, mind you, but for the people at the top; it gives them all of the control and power they could ever dream of. If you're in power lust, what better solution than to have a society that feels they have a duty to take from each other, with you in a position to determine or influence who gets sacrificed to who -- a fabulous all-against-all, with death to those who resist
 

AceNZ

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#19
Change 3 words and it works this way too...

Capitalism works almost perfectly. Not for the masses, mind you, but for the people at the top; it gives them all of the control and power they could ever dream of. If you're in power lust, what better solution than to have a society that feels they have a duty to take from each other, with you in a position to determine or influence who gets sacrificed to who -- a fabulous all-against-all, with death to those who resist
What you're describing is not capitalism. There is no "taking" in capitalism; it's a system of free, voluntary trade, without force or fraud. It's not all-against-all; it's foundation is individual rights, freedom and personal responsibility. What we have today is much closer to fascism (a marriage of corporations and state) than it is to capitalism.
 

Libertaurum

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#20
It's been said, but it bears repeating: If socialism were voluntary, it would be called capitalism.

The reason socialism has advanced is that most people want the gov't to refrain from violating individual rights in most cases, but vehemently demand that it do in a few others.

For example, many people support the idea of limited government in general, but will demand the gov't redistribute wealth without ever seeing any contradiction. Some sincerely believe they support personal responsibility but demand in the next breath that the gov't force some people to pay for the education of other people's children. Many say they favor free markets while reacting almost violently to the idea that the gov't shouldn't regulate minimum wages, immigration or international trade. The fact that most people are willing to allow for exceptions and compromise when it comes to their pet peeves gives the gov't enough room to intervene in almost every aspect of people's lives. The sugar coating for that bitter pill, the most common justification for those contradictions is the "common good". Ironically, it is the common good that is always sacrificed when people are willing to accept the violation of some individuals' rights as long as they think it won't apply to them.

Good intentions and the willingness to accept contradictions in one's beliefs (or the inability to recognize them) are all socialism requires to advance.

JMO
 
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#21
I was watching a Sarah Palin interview about how bailouts are the greatest thing since sliced bread and how nice it is that the gov't can force the taxpayer to fund the corporate establishment etc. Guess what she calls it - "a free market". Communism/socialism has been so discredited that it's proponents often try to distance themselves from it. When someone calls himself a capitalist/free marketer etc., the chances are he is a communist in denial.

Do you know how at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings they will raise their hands and chant "I am an alcoholic!" to overcome their denial problem? What Palin & Co need to do is chant "I am a communist!"
 

Dzepxich

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#23
Communism works great- when it is on the level of a small family, tribe or town, and completely voluntary.
Anthropologists have studied this. Communism works great in small groups, when there are more than 75 people in a tribe, it starts breaking down. When you get more than 75 people involved, one of them will decide that he doesn't have to do actual work and is more suited to a "supervisory" role.
 

smilershouse

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#24
Anthropologists have studied this. Communism works great in small groups, when there are more than 75 people in a tribe, it starts breaking down. When you get more than 75 people involved, one of them will decide that he doesn't have to do actual work and is more suited to a "supervisory" role.
Good ob, there is however, a new trend emerging over the past 30 years where it will be a predominant 'she' doesn't have to do actual work and is more suited to a "supervisory" role, or a role that requires contributing with little dirt or sweat.

SH
 

Oldmansmith

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#26
What you're describing is not capitalism. There is no "taking" in capitalism; it's a system of free, voluntary trade, without force or fraud. It's not all-against-all; it's foundation is individual rights, freedom and personal responsibility. What we have today is much closer to fascism (a marriage of corporations and state) than it is to capitalism.
I'm no socialist, but there IS "taking" in capatalism: the taking of natural resources that by right are owned by everyone.

It worked great in 1800; not so great in today's world with biliions and billions of people.
 

AceNZ

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#27
I'm no socialist, but there IS "taking" in capatalism: the taking of natural resources that by right are owned by everyone.

It worked great in 1800; not so great in today's world with biliions and billions of people.
Why are natural resources owned by everyone? Ownership implies both recognizing the value of something, and doing something with that value. Natural resources sat around for thousands of years, with humans not using them. When someone finally recognizes the value and does all of the work required to bring it to market, now the rest of us somehow have the right to claim ownership? I don't think so. The true rights involved here are property rights.

Also, why does the number of people on the planet matter?