Tuesday, March 05, 2013

"Socialist Mind".....?

On a blog a few weeks ago, I rather unwisely stuck my oar into a thread about gun control. Someone commented that "Twilight has a socialist mind"....it was not meant as a compliment!

What is a socialist mind? Depends who you ask, and who is doing the labelling. Everyone has their own idea about socialism. Labelling, however, in any political context is a lazy tactic used to criticise and demean. I guess it gives the person attaching the label feelings of superiority? To appear to be correct in all their opinions? Unwilling to even give another point of view any consideration at all, because theirs is always correct, incontrovertible - one must be stupid not to realize this, of course.

My "socialist mind" requires that the nation's government should deal fairly with matters pertaining to the population, follow voters' wishes in accordance with promises made to them, and not according to how many thousands of $$$$$$$$$$ some corporation or other body donated to their party's or their personal campaign chest.

My "socialist mind" requires that the government should regulate and control the purchase of firearms, with checks on background and mental health of purchaser as an absolute minimum requirement. Limits on the number and power of firearms and ammunition owned by any single individual should be in place.

My "socialist mind" requires that my government does not involve itself in illegal killing of innocent people in foreign countries without giving them fair trial, whatever their crime, and that use of drones be heavily regulated and restricted to surveillance except in clear emergency situations.....absolutely no arbitrary "kill lists" of either American citizens or citizens of other nations!!

My "socialist mind" requires that the ability of employees to form unions be unrestricted, and that working conditions be subject to minimum requirements on both sides, presented via a written contract of employment (including days of paid sick leave, annual leave, hours of work etc.)

My "socialist mind" requires that health care should be available to all via a nationally organised plan similar to those citizens of most western European countries enjoy.

My "socialist mind" requires that elections should not be financed by input of corporate money, but should be publicly funded and the time spent on campaigning should be strictly limited - maximum of 3 months perhaps.

There's more but that's the drift......

What is so bad about any of that?

Commenter "mike" yesterday left me a link to the video below - I think it fits in rather well here:


♥ Sonny ♥ said...

I see to also have a more socialist view and yet I more think of it as
universal concousness? -spelling:(..

what I mean is until each entity if valued equality for their qualities and abilities, we cant ALL be Whole.

no one person is more than another and we are all learning and teaching each other, even if some are to teach what NOT to do..

mike said...

You go, Twilight! I don't mind being called a socialist...I take it as a compliment, even if intended to excoriate.

Actually, the truer definitions of socialist and communist are fairly benign and are almost the same...there are sub-definitions to each, which can complicate the meanings. Capitalism isn't so devious, either, when practiced with greed subdued. The quantity of spiritualism and love going into the formula determines the outcome.

The history of socialism and communism began with the French Revolution and the Industrial Revolution. Capitalism has a peculiar history, deriving from feudalism and mercantilism. The capitalistic system seems to always operate at a net expense to the poor and surplus for the rich. Oddly, the poors' involvement in the system, usually as cheap labor, is a requirement and capitalism wouldn't be complete without this dependency. The poor make the rich.

The three systems are tainted with negative pasts by abuse of power and politics for a directed outcome. If humans were altruistic, all three of these systems would work, but there wouldn't be a need for any system! A positive for capitalism is that there is incentive for choice and quality by competition...socialism and communism can provide this, if there is no political mandate toward mediocrity for the masses.

Twilight, your post of the video is cropped on the right side by about a centimeter or two. This happens with many photos you post, too. It doesn't bother me, but thought I'd inform you.

Twilight said...

Sonny ~~ Good point - that some are teaching us what NOT to do by our observation of their actions and results of same! Yes indeedy! ;-)

Twilight said...

mike ~~ I often say to the husband that nobody has ever managed to "do" socialism (or communism for that matter) properly; the same applies to capitalism. I suppose it has always been those twin demons, greed and the quest for power, getting in the way.

Hmmm - re the cropping of video and photographs. I think it has to be something to do with your personal settings, Mike.
I checked on husband's computer and the video looks okay, as it does on mine - no cropping.

I use Firefox as browser, maybe you use a different one? That might make a difference.

It's hard to know exactly what other people are seeing, there are so many variations in equipment, browsers, operating systems and settings, no way to ensure the way I set out a post is seen exactly that way by all visitors. :-)

mike (again) said...

How wise you were to redirect my "cropped" comment back to me, Twilight! I use Firefox...did a View->Zoom->Zoom Out...twice. For some reason, the text stays the same, but the photos and today's video rescale appropriately. Go figure. Thanks and sorry.

LB said...

I'm with you on this, Twilight:)

It's also why I remain a strong supporter of no cuts to so-called 'entitlement' programs and of universal healthcare (HR676 here in the US), *not* to be confused with the Affordable Care Act which I *don't support, and which many wrongly assume to be universal healthcare. And why I'm concerned about poverty, gun-control, torture, drones and current wars, and the lack of awareness and protection of our environment and food sources; my faith compels me to act in ways that put spiritual principles into action. For others, acting on humanistic concerns and following their conscience leads them to be similarly labeled.

By today's standards, both Jesus and the Buddha would probably be considered socialists.

Putting spiritual and moral imperatives aside, there are practical reasons why it makes greater sense to take a less short-sighted approach to society's problems. The 2011 documentary "Surviving Progress" addresses many of these issues, including what historian and author Ronald Wright refers to as the "progress trap".

anyjazz said...

I suspect that the world as we know it is going to be "just one of those things."
"If we'd thought a bit,
'bout the end of it..."

Twilight said...

mike ~~ So pleased you've ironed out the settings thing - I've experienced a similar problem myself in the past.

I wondered, after I'd replied to your comment, if perhaps something Blogger was playing around with was affecting the post - they tend to experiment at times. Glad it's sorted anyway.

Twilight said...

LB ~~ Hi there! We're on exactly the same page on this - thanks for your comment! :-)

I haven't seen the documentary to which you refer - but I shall make a point of acquiring a copy ASAP!

Progress has progressed too far, too fast; our human intellectual capabilities have simply not kept pace with it, even though we think they have. It's as though we are riding a child's tricycle in the fastest lane of an Interstate. :-(

Twilight said...

anyjazz ~ Yes - and most are still out there "painting the town"....
;-) That "trip to the Moon on gossamer wings" is looking better by the day.

R J Adams said...

Well said, Twilight. Frankly, I'm socialist and proud of it. The alternative is: "stuff you, I'm alright, Jack!"
As other commentators have remarked: it's not the political systems that fail, but those who use and abuse others to gain power and control over them.
Most Americans who scorn 'socialism' are too ignorant to have the faintest idea what it is and are just parrotizing Fox News or Limbaugh.

Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~~ So true! Re 2nd para: it applies equally to many in Britain these days too, not sure who they parrot over there. :-)

Twilight said...

I've just read about the death of Hugo Chavez with Tweets and various commentary. Judging from the number of positive comments there would appear to be more socialist minds around than I'd have expected. Good!

RIP President Hugo Chavez - gone much, much too soon.

mike (again) said...

Saw this on the news a couple of days ago:

Nightly News | March 01, 2013
Kennedy under fire for praising Chavez
Former congressman Joseph Kennedy’s nonprofit Citizens Energy has given Hugo Chavez credit for contributing oil, but Chavez’s anti-American rhetoric has raised eyebrows. NBC’s Ron Mott reports.


Chomp said...

In America the worst insult they can make you is to say that you have a “socialist mind”, of course of socialism they know under zero, they know only “socialism”

But all this is simply ridiculous.
Now the whole world knows where capitalism - not “capitalism” - led the world...

Wisewebwoman said...

Hear Hear!

Twilight said...

mike ~~~ Thanks for the link. It's so good to see Joseph Kennedy supporting Chavez's humane action in providing oil for heating for the poor of the NE against those horrendously uncaring critics, who have never known what it is to be cold and unable to afford food.

Twilight said...

Chomp ~~ Yes - the results of unfettered capitalism are becoming clearer every year, and still people will continue to parrot what they hear and see from right-wing pundits and talking heads who have vested interest in keeping up this myth that "capitalism good, socialism bad - very very bad".

Twilight said...

Wisewebwoman ~~ Hi! :-)

mike (again) said...

Here's an interesting link regarding ACLU's new effort to collect data and expose America's militarizing of police:


Twilight said...

mike (again) - Thanks for that one! Ugh!!! That is downright dystopian- scary!

Those are long gone days when the local policeman used to ride around our town on his bike, always a nod and a wave, often posted at the end of our street near the traffic lights, always willing to answer the odd question for a passing youngster.... What a sad evolution (mind you, that was in England, but I dare say the same things are happening there as here now).