[OT] Re: Python training time (was)

Jack Diederich jack at performancedrivers.com
Sat Feb 1 19:00:58 CET 2003

On Sat, Feb 01, 2003 at 05:15:41PM +0100, Laura Creighton wrote:
> <snipping only to isolate the bit I find disageeable>
> [Jack Diederich]
> > There are two ways to deal with the disparity between commercial value and
> > intrinsic value. One, let some people get a deal (the $100 big mac guy) 
> > and let others (the $1 guy) forgoe the big mac.  We call this Capitalism.
> > The other is for a governing body to set the commercial value to what they
> > determine the instric value is.  We call this Socialism, Marx's recomendation
> > to the government for determining the intrinsic value is stated above.
> You may call that Socialism, but here in Sweden, where we have
> Socialism, we call that 'a command economy' and (most of us) are not
> impressed.  There are more flavours of Socialism than you will get out
> of a purely Libertarian library, however excellent in other respects.
> There exist alternatives to those 2 ways.  Around here, we try some.
> Sometimes we screw up big time, sometimes we hit it on the nose.

*nod* even the US is a mix of free industries and controlled
The US likes to think of ourself as full-blown capitalism for reasons of 
national pride, and so we can scoff at Europe.
Europe   "    "   "   "   the US  "     "          "       "    "     "
 "         "     "   " they "  "    " the US

[those quotes looked terrible, but you get the idea]

Politicians learned long ago that they will be blamed when strict command
and control industries fail.  If you regulate an industry so some class
of goods are merely more expensive no one seems to notice.  If all similar
goods cost more than they should they look similar.  And it is impossible
to know what industries would have existed if the overhead were lower.

In the US the price of dairy products isn't set, but a subsidy is given
that starts high in a particular town in Vermont (east coast) and diminishes
the further the crow flies.  The midwest makes milk more cheaply than they
can in Vermont for land cost and productivity reasons.  The result is that we 
all pay 10% more for milk (in taxes) than we should but twenty cents a gallon
doesn't hurt enough for people to care.  Multiply that by thousands of
products and people should care, but again it is really hard to grasp.

I'll also agree that Socialism is a lot more vaguely defined than Capitalism.
Both, however, are frequently used as accusations :)

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