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    Posted: 04-Aug-2006 at 05:33
What are the alternatives to organising a country or society around the western free market, and how would/did they work? Past, present or hypothesized for the future.
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Richard XIII Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Aug-2006 at 06:48
Humanity dreams about alternatives centuries. There is no one.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Aug-2006 at 07:53
The west doesn't have a free market. One of the possible answers therefore is a regulated oligopoly like we have now.
 
I need more time to produce any more of an answer.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote xi_tujue Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Aug-2006 at 08:01
belgium has a sort of free market but is controlled by the goverment at some degree(I should really pay more attention in economic class). I forgot what it was called. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paul Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04-Aug-2006 at 08:36
Originally posted by Richard XIII Richard XIII wrote:

Humanity dreams about alternatives centuries. There is no one.
 
There have been several both past and present. The Spartan Timarchy springs to mind and currently Kibbutz. Also Digger communities around the world, past and present.


Edited by Paul - 04-Aug-2006 at 08:37
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maharbbal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Aug-2006 at 22:31
Alternatives...

Well, there is 1984. Everything that matters is under state control. A controller estimates the needs of the society and bureaucracy is charged to realize the aims as planned by the politicians. See for instance, USSR, China etc.
You have mid-terms mixing such a system with market. The US from 1941 to 1945 are a good example.

Nowadays in Cuba the Army is the most important producer of sugar and 80% of the stuff exported come from their factories.

Actually free market is a fairly modern invention. The Ancien Regime in Europe was more about "fair market" as economy was also a moral. Indeed the prices weren't supposed to be fixed by the enconter of supply and demand but by some good and christian value. Consequently usually the price of bread was fixed by the government.

As gcle has mentionned, there is also the monopolistic economy. Nowadays this is the case of oil for instance (oligopolistic to be exact).

The market economy implies a complete freedom or to be more pricise a complete dependence on the balance between supply and demand. Yet many lesser phenomenon can interfear with it. Apartheid for instance, when not all the potential workers could have any kind of job.

In India I suppect, there was some kind of social economy where your position within the frame of the division of labour was primary due to you belonging to a cast.

Tribes and anarchists have also developped different types of economies. In some utopian factories the workers realize different kinds of jobs every day and are paid according to their needs and not according to the value of their work. The various tribes have also extremely varied ways of sharing their "production" but anyway in this case the word "market" loses it sense.

Then one must not turn a blind eye on auto-production and self-consumption.

Within the companies (themselves cought in the market) the market doesn't really work and the hierarchy does the job of sharing the tasks.

Finally some activities are kept by the states as monopolies as for instance judging criminal, enforcing laws or protecting the borders.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 17:52
Complete economic indipendant sustainability, if you have the land resources and urban levels the best thing is a combination of free (as in nonregulated) trade coupled with the intention to keep industrial and never become a service economy where meaningless goods move around and generate money not backed up by any standard.  Produce actual physical things because ephemeral stuff like clothes lines and writers wont get you nowhere in an economic downturn.  Always have your exports AT LEAST match your imports and become so skilled that even if you have no resources people will still send you their stuff to make because you do it better.
 
This is very much based on the post ww2 Japanese development ideas, protection for high quality and an intentional move away from being a full on service economy. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maharbbal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 18:22
For the Jap economy you are forgetting a few details. It was non-regulated because the workers were properly exploited by the big companies tied up with the government and the mafia. Beside they had the blessing of a foreign market at home: the US troops and from 1950 to 1953 the Korean War. They also enjoyed a few once-in-a-lifetime advantages: no international patent to be respected and the LA market more open to them than to the rest of the US for some weird laws. All that to say, in my opinion it was not a system, it was a one-shot phenotype. Conserning the services you should pay attention to the Japanese banks the most powerful in the world since the 60's.

Maybe the alternative to market economy as we know it is an absolute market economy where every workers doesn't own his tool but manage it at will. For example if nowadays you own (or manage) a movie theater with two rooms you need somebody at the caisse,  one person to open each room and one person to handle each projector. In the alternative market economy, you would stay at the caisse and you would rent each room to a diferent person who could decide of the program. This person would also hire a projectionist who would come with his own material (you would pick a specialist according to  your needs, HD digital or old silent black and wight. There would be no boss no more only a pure seller-buyer relationship as everybody would own its personnal company.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Aug-2006 at 18:44
Those factors are irrelevent ot the overall principles, service economy is a death trap of stagnation and eventual decline into deficiet and uselessness.  Government (or mafia, whatever same thing in practice) should intentionally stymie the encroach of the service economy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Aug-2006 at 06:26
Originally posted by Tobodai Tobodai wrote:

Those factors are irrelevent ot the overall principles, service economy is a death trap of stagnation and eventual decline into deficiet and uselessness.  Government (or mafia, whatever same thing in practice) should intentionally stymie the encroach of the service economy.
 
So we do without education, health services, transport, banking, armed forces, police, wholesalers and retailers, insurance, entertainment, restaurants and cafes and bars...?
 
Sounds pretty dysfunctional to me.
 
Who is the manufacturing sector (if it can still function at all) going to sell its products to?
 


Edited by gcle2003 - 18-Aug-2006 at 06:28
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Aug-2006 at 22:46
Does Japan not have health services transport banking or police?
 
No, do you know what I mean by the service economy? Apparently not.  COuntries like most of the first world that dont make anything and only rely on debt and resources of others, this is why the have no future.  Two kinds of this are the US (ballooning debt and lack of manufacturing ability) and France (failure of dynamism to adapt to the changing world).
 
I am all for public services, but not service economies.  They are different things.  Most now service economies used to be industrial and often had more government services than they do now!  Especially the US whose industrial peak corresponded with its closest time of economic equality in the 1960's.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote King Kang of Mu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 03:20
[QUOTE=Tobodai]
 
No, do you know what I mean by the service economy? Apparently not.  COuntries like most of the first world that dont make anything and only rely on debt and resources of others, this is why the have no future.  Two kinds of this are the US (ballooning debt and lack of manufacturing ability) and France (failure of dynamism to adapt to the changing world).
 [/QUOT
Yo, I understand US part but France?  I think they are  struggling  because they actually try  to address  this very issue.  I don't know what  exact  numbers are but  all those race/religion/labor riots in France last year was one 9of the greatest examples of a society which is open enough for many Afriacan/ Arab/Moslem to seek the 'European Dream'.  I mean, of course there will be More racial issue in California than Vermont which makes me laugh at Howard Dean. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 05:38
 
Originally posted by Tobodai Tobodai wrote:

Does Japan not have health services transport banking or police?
 
No, do you know what I mean by the service economy? Apparently not. 
No I don't. Apparently you don't mean the same thing everyone else does.
Quote
 
COuntries like most of the first world that dont make anything and only rely on debt and resources of others, this is why the have no future.  Two kinds of this are the US (ballooning debt and lack of manufacturing ability) and France (failure of dynamism to adapt to the changing world).
Have you seen the French economic data recently? Or even more the British? (And the British economy is probably the most services-dominated of any major country.)
 
The US doesn't have a lack of manufacturing ability: in fact it, like Germany, has always been rather good at it. It can't do it as cheaply as many other countries, but that's because it doesn't exploit its workforce so harshly. Now that investment capital is fairly freely available globally, for the US to successfully return to exporting manufactures as a basis for its wealth it would have to considerably degrade the life styles and living conditions of its people - at least the poor ones.
 
And the US's ballooning debt (which I agree is a problem) is the result of a political program designed to try and hide from the American people the economic realities of life.
 
Nixon (second term anyway) and Carter tried to get Americans to face economic reality. And look what it did to their reputations in the country.
 
It's not just that the US can't export manufactures: it also, unlike Britain, is not doing a very good job of exporting services either.
Quote
 
I am all for public services, but not service economies.  They are different things.  Most now service economies used to be industrial and often had more government services than they do now!  Especially the US whose industrial peak corresponded with its closest time of economic equality in the 1960's.
 
You still haven't told me what you mean by a service economy, which makes it difficult to understand what you are trying to say.


Edited by gcle2003 - 19-Aug-2006 at 05:38
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tobodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Aug-2006 at 15:05
A service dominated economy as understood in the US is one where the occurance of buying and selling far outstrip the ability to produce.  This works as long as international trade works, but once a major manufacturer is cut off, even temporarily, the service economy will have to re-leanr how to be industrial again, if it can.  For example, the US now has to import bullets from Israel to be used in Iraq because the army cannot make them fast enough.
 
Thus the prevalance of nothing but malls and travel agents and chauffers cannot sustain a balanced economy without other things, I wrote a report on how this kind of economy caused pre war Japan's collapse and invasions of other countries for resources, sound familar? that was the point of the essay.
 
And even if the US retains some industrial output it is nothing compared to its past, Americans have to step up and compete, and learn how to make things well again.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-Aug-2006 at 08:01
 
Originally posted by Tobodai Tobodai wrote:

A service dominated economy as understood in the US is one where the occurance of buying and selling far outstrip the ability to produce. 
Produce what? Manufactures aren't the only things that are bought and sold.
 
My understanding  of a 'service economy' as understood in the economic faculties I have been a member of is an economy in which performing services for other people (including for the community at large) is of more importance (contributes more to GDP) than manufacturing, raw material production (mining etc) or agriculture. It includes providing services necessary or useful to manufacturing.
 
Services can be performed by companies or individuals in one country for inhabitants of others, so services can be exported to pay for importing manufactures or raw materials.
 
Britain does very well out of exporting services - insurance, capital management and investment, education for instance - and has done so for well over a century. In fact at the height of its economic power it was already well into the transformation into a service economy - just as it had led in transforming from an agriculture and primary extraction one into a manufacturing one.
Quote
This works as long as international trade works, but once a major manufacturer is cut off, even temporarily, the service economy will have to re-leanr how to be industrial again, if it can.  For example, the US now has to import bullets from Israel to be used in Iraq because the army cannot make them fast enough.
So are you suggesting that all countries should be trying to be self-sufficient in weaponry? Everyone should have their own nuclear bombs?
 
Apart from anything else, the military is a service industry.
Quote
Thus the prevalance of nothing but malls and travel agents and chauffers cannot sustain a balanced economy without other things, I wrote a report on how this kind of economy caused pre war Japan's collapse and invasions of other countries for resources, sound familar? that was the point of the essay.
 
Never saw it. Where? Are you really claiming Japan collapsed before WW2?
 
Why pick malls and travel agents and chauffeurs? Malls are only a kind of shop - how is the manufacturing industry going to sell its products without shops (and warehouses and transport)? How is it going to finance its inventory or invest in new equipment without financial services to provide the capital? As long as you have large-scale travel you will have travel agents - travel agents in the UK go back to 1848, not long after the railways were invented. And where will you be without travel facilities - the provision of which is another service industry.
 
You really don't seem to have thought this through at all: what you're presenting is a severely misunderstood and even primitive idea of the way the world's economy works.
 
Manufacturing depends on all sorts of services to keep it going, from the provision of finance and places to store and sell its products to advertising and marketing services to help it sell them and transport serices to move it around the world. You can't export anything without shipping to export it in. (Conversely you can make a nice little living providing shipping to foreign countries that don't provide it for themselves.)
 
There are many many ways in which services can be exported, just as there are some products (housing for instance) that cannot be.
 
Quote
 
And even if the US retains some industrial output it is nothing compared to its past, Americans have to step up and compete, and learn how to make things well again.
 
What you have to face is that manufacturing with every passing year of modernisation, automation and roboticisation requires fewer and fewer people to produce the manufactured goods that are demanded. That is what is driving the need to develop primarily service-oriented economies. If that doesn't happen then there is no market for the manufacturers to sell to.
 
It's just like the switch from agriculture to manufacturing industry a century and more ago. You cannot go back to some mystical past fairy land of a manufacturing economy any more than you can go back to an agricutural utopia.
 


Edited by gcle2003 - 20-Aug-2006 at 08:02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Odin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22-Aug-2006 at 22:25

The notion of a "free market" is a fantasy. All markets are regulated, the question is whether they are regulated for the benifit of the elite or for the benifit of society as a whole. When you have a Lassez-Faire economy the economy becomes de facto regulated by powerful corporate intrests that want to turn the populance into thier serfs.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Aug-2006 at 05:26
True but you should perhaps add that they can also be regulated for the benefit of the workers in them, when trades unions become over-powerful.
 
Sometimes indeed the workers collude with the employers against the consumer, since, working together, they both gain from higher profits.
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote malizai_ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Aug-2006 at 11:28
Originally posted by gcle2003 gcle2003 wrote:

The west doesn't have a free market.
 
 
Beat me to it.
 
Britian is very much becoming a service economy.


Edited by malizai_ - 23-Aug-2006 at 11:30
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gcle2003 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-Aug-2006 at 15:11
Indeed it has been for quite a while.
 
Remember Napoleon's verdict - 'a nation of shopkeepers'?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Maharbbal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13-Sep-2006 at 23:15
Isn't the real issue the increasing weight of capital toward work and the gapping difference of wage between high salaries and low salaries. Both are creating a new proletaria...

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