In response to BJ Campbell

BJ (ha ha-nominative determinism strikes again) over at Handwaving Freakoutery produced a great dialogue to infotain us. Thanks. ;)

A point of contention for the bigger picture to me is that the arguments over economic systems always seem to fail to ask, "What are people FOR?".

"Crying 'Overpopulation!' is another way of shifting the blame of [consumptionism] from the rich to the poor." -George Monbiot

“A corporation is a pile of money to which a group of people swear moral allegiance” -Wendell Berry

The stock market is a casino where people place bets on the competitive moral turpitude of those men who not only harvest the fruits of mass labors, but they hate the masses to boot (as do communists, apparently: they seem to try so hard to thin out the herds they have to feed).

The underlying need is for a cultural evolution toward humans being useful to their place and the future of their place (sustainability requires us to sustain something other than our pie holes and toilet paper factories), rather than unquestioned perpetual growth of extractive colonialism.

I see no reason why that change can't be market-based (other than basic habitualized myopic selfishness, which many cultures periodically overcome), as well as limiting government by market forces, simply by placing all overhead costs of bureaucracy and society infrastructure into sales taxes, with basic income paid to everyone equally, directly from those sales taxes, regardless of their occupation or self-earned wealth (let’s call it “cannon fodder pay”). The rate and the 'prebate' to be determined by the society, with an eye on the needs of future people, not so much for present people.

Present people trade their future selves' labors for trinkets and promises against their own interests all the time (debt; especially for consumables or luxuries). It's one of the common misconceptions (including professional economists) that banks "loan money into existence". What is really happening is that people promise to destroy their place sometime in the future (or work for someone who does) to pay back a loan, thereby 'creating' money by promising to do more than they otherwise are already doing in the here and now. In other words, debts are theft from your future self: with interest.

Now, back to barter: if all overhead costs are at the purchase point (sales taxes), then people can make informed choices about the real costs of a purchased chair from, say, China, vs. cutting down a tree and making it themselves or trading some homemade beer for a neighbor's chair to avoid high costs that are currently externalized and diffused into the decay of the planet.

The need for bureaucracy and government comes into play when we buy things and 'invest' nonlocally (including creating --ocracies) not when we own stuff or produce value with our labors and sustained local resources.

Much of the "leakage" described in your chart can be directly assigned to the income tax code: an anti-local, anti-sustainable system that encourages everyone to be blind capitalists rather than sensibly aware capitalists (encouraging high debts and high consumption to create high GDP to tax to pay for high maintenance and imperialism). The leakage occurs in both directions, and is especially corrupting in how the disinformation of consumer choice is tax-deductible. This leads to consumers making choices that are pre-staged by The Show, and those staged choices are counted and collated as influence by The Factory telling the Castle where to attack next supposedly in the interests of The Cathedral (consumers), but actually only driven by The Factory (literally, as post WWII consumerism was designed to keep factories running at wartime levels for full employment policy).

Things like corporate charters, patents, etc..pretend that a person's value is determined by their participation in blind, fanatically competitive capitalism (people have so many brands they don’t have room for tattoos to trade handjobs for).

Cooperative capitalism (barter) is fought tooth and nail by both plutocratic and communist bullies.

Therein lies the rub of "exploitation": when the strong take advantage of forced (real and contrived)weaknesses in order to increase their strength without a useful purpose that benefits the future of places.

Communists hate capitalism, but what they really should be hating is bullying, and communism per se is just bullying by a different label. It won't happen without it, so they keep saying it needs to be voluntary, but without asking what the people under communism are going to do to benefit the future of their places or humanity's places (Earth and Universe). They just want everyone agree to be bullied by a system of authority, rather than authority being subservient to people’s places.

To fix capitalism, you just need anti-capitalism feedback that allows a choice to benefit one’s place and future (sales tax) and cooperative people who don't tolerate bullies. This leaves people to trade more or less freely based on that goal of service to future (of themselves, their places and their grandchildren). Humans didn’t really evolve in a way that lets us automatically know the difference between bullying and leadership. We really need to work on that, and stop waiting for an Invisible Hand Job to be our moral compass. Charismatic communists are just as bad as charismatic capitalists. (Socialism, by the way, should be thought of as “anti-bullying”, not “anti-capitalism”, but habit has allowed capitalism to embrace bullying).

To fix communism, you have to eliminate colleges as we know them (mandatory civic service draft so everyone gets basic work experience and bureaucratic training before buying a credential to get out of those things). To make it worse, we could just give away free college.

The problem with market education in a system driven by plutocracy is that the usefulness of people to their place is replaced with their usefulness to the plutocracy. One dollar = one vote, and it usually votes for the other dollars.

When combined with an imagined aristocratic morals system that teaches children about magical sky puppets granting wishes, it’s no wonder that we can’t parse the value of ourselves to our place out of our price in the market.

Reader. Fixer. Maker.

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