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Old April 27 2010, 08:01 PM   #56
Rush Limborg
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Re: was ezri right in Tacking into the Wind - are Klingons hypocrites?

FordSVT wrote: View Post
Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
FordSVT wrote: View Post
Right, a free society only made possible with virtually unlimited land, energy and resources, where everyone's food, housing, medical and educational needs are met by the state.

It's a total fantasy universe, it has nothing to do with modern political or economic principles, including what you think of as capitalism or conservatism or anything else you'd like to imagine.
(sigh) Other than the fact that I was just illustrating my disagreement with Nerys...and that to over-emphasize this line is to take the bloody thread even more off topic...
If you don't want to discuss things, don't say them.
Again--I was just giving an example of the sole manner of disagreement--and why I feel somewhat more optimistic towards the UFP.

To be frank, I have yet to see a canonical--or even TrekLit--establishment that "everyone's food, housing, medical and educational needs are met by the state". I could be wrong--but until I am proven so, I stand by those comments.
I think an amalgamation of the available canon evidence would suggest that indeed, on core Federation worlds like Earth and Betazed at least, Federation citizens are given public schooling and have their medical needs provided for. Would you argue that corporations run their school and health care system or that they're for profit?
Something akin to that. I would argue that the profit motive would be a sufficient incentive for private companies to provide the highest possible quality at the lowest possible price.

It's been stated there is no poverty or hunger, I'm pretty sure it's not because they've found a way to guarantee 100% unemployment through raw capitalism. You really think society went in the totally opposite direction we're going today in a future with unlimited resources? You can build homes and apartments and power them for next to nothing given their level of technology.
Precisely! You really think the replicator was invented at the behest of the government? Of course not--but its provision, and the provison from many other technological breakthroughs, which resulted in practically unlimited resources--directly leads to such a high standard of living--and such ease in aquiring it--that the term "poverty" becomes meanigless.

Then again I'd argue that their entire political and particularly their economic system is different enough from ours based on the available evidence (again, because of their level of tech and a non-scarcity environment) that traditional labels like "socialism" and "capitalism" are a bit in error. They have a government system that seems like a mix of Republicanism and the Parliamentary system. They seem to have one economic system within the Federation for its citizens (this no money business Kirk and Picard go on about) while maintaining a way to interact with outside economies on small and large scales. They'd have to have an amalgamation of all kinds of economic ideas cherry picked in order for it to work.
I grant that--to a point. You see--capitalism is not simply an economic system. It is the only economic system presently or historically in existence that is completely compatible with the concept of inalienable, individual rights--life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness--and therefore, private property. All other systems in existence--fascism, socialism, corporatism, welfare statism, pure "democracy"--advocate the violation of the rights of some for the good of another.

Now, I do not deny that there may in fact be a future form of a free-market economy, which would make what we now call "capitalism" outdated. However, this system must respect the rights of the individual, and the concept of private property, or else prosperity is suppressed, immediately or through a gradual process.
"The saying implies but does not name the effective agency of its supposed utopia.... 'Needs and abilities' are, of course, subjective. So the operative statement may be reduced to 'the State shall take, the State shall give'."
--David Mamet
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