Why is it that people in Russia do not worship free enterprise capitalism like Americans?
Because most end up rather more rich than anyone really needs to be, which suggests they are greedy self centred people who don't care about anyone other than themselves... the opposite of what should be worshipped...
A good example would be Microsoft and Bill Gates... Bill Gates isn't that smart, but he got into a situation where his company was making more money than they could have printed themselves... most of their original money came from MS DOS... Microsoft DOS... which is a basic programming language that was installed on computers to allow the user to control the computer and load programmes and software. He took an existing DOS from the time and modified it and then got $50 US dollars for every personal computer sold in the US with it installed on... it is like inventing a type of step that is easy to clean and creates good grip so you are unlikely to slip on it even when it is icy and then pave all staircases with those steps for safety, and every time someone uses each of those steps they send you 10 cents or something... you invented the step but you don't have to make them or invent anything you... you just get this steady income from the users of your step... so you can use that money to develop other things people use and make more money off that too.
He didn't need to be smart to do that... but it really helped to be a hard faced bastard.
He could have said it was someone elses work which I modified a little so give me $20K and everyone buying computers would have saved $50, or he could have done what he did and made billions.
The guy who first designed the electronic Spreadsheet did not patent his design... he had an accountant friend who used spreadsheets that were actual paper spread sheets, and he came up with the idea of a computerised system... his friend... once he understood how the computerised system worked just said one thing... how much... how much money do you want for a copy of this for me... he said $50 (must have been the going rate for everything in those days)...
He came back a few days later saying that instead of spending 4-5 hours at home every night doing spread sheet work on paper, he now does it in about half an hour and can print out bits and do extra calculations he previously would not bother with because of the time consuming nature, and he also said he showed his accountant friends and they all wanted their own copies... $50 each.... but without a patent lots of spreadsheets were developed and sold some with all sorts of extra features and options of course but the inventor did not become rich... he was just a programmer who wanted to help his friend and other people in the same position.
So which is the person who deserves the accolades and money... the greedy business savy bastard, or the guy wanting to help his friend and others like him spend more time with their families...
Many right wing libertarians here in America want to privatize social security, public education, health care, etc......
They will claim the reason is to make it more efficient and get rid of publicly funded bloat, but there is no reason why the government can't do the same.
The core problems with privatisation is... the people with the money to afford it... are they interested in doing a good job or are they trying to control an area of the market and get a monopoly to make money.
Should healthcare be profitable... and how profitable. When a CEO of a drugs company justifies increasing the price of a life saving drug by 1000% by saying his job is to maximise returns for stock holders, and that treatments generate more income and more customers than cures do you have to ask yourself is that morally acceptable.
A government run system might not be so efficient but developing cures means less sick people and reduces the chance of transmission of transmissable diseases and conditions, and gets more people not just back to work but functioning as normal human beings which is what the health system should be for.
Private companies might say the purpose of education is to get young people to a level where they can do their job in terms of language and math and logic and common sense...
Certainly tertiary education should be about advancing knowledge working with industry and business, but all industry and all business to progress and get better.
Business would see working with tertiary education as a chance to get some cheap labour to solve some things that cost them money, or just save some money getting some jobs done.
People say that the Public Schools are bad because it is a socialist idea and a government monopoly but the Soviet Union did a good job in educating students in Math, Science and literacy.
There is a saying of "it is not what you know but who you know"... often the school you went to can determine if you do well in some industries, and getting to know the future managers and CEOs of companies does not hurt either... if you know the boss well it is easier to progress.
I suspect most senators and congressmen don't send their kids to public schools so when they cut funding and those public schools cut good programmes then they are not effected... even more so they can point to poor results and suggest privatisation as a good solution to their problems.... do you want some irony... often those private schools get government funding too... and often rather more government funding than the public schools get, though of course the private schools are where the 1% went and their children will go so funding is not normally too much of a problem.
Private prisons in the US are popular because it is slave labour because US law means you can pay inmates anything you like and lets face it... given the choice of working or sitting alone in a cell for 23 hours a day I know which I would choose.
Any incident and you get a longer sentence... unless you are sick and need expensive medical treatment or expensive medication and then you will be out as soon as possible I suspect.
I want to know what is the rebuttal to the American idea that government is bad at running things?
Americans seem to fear government control and think the solution is corporate control... what they don't realise is they have both... corporate money controls their government... it flows to both sides... both parties so it does not matter who you vote for... they win.
Europeans seem to be the opposite and are anti big corporation and pro big government.
Personally I think if the government is going to get a percentage of everything I earn and then another percentage of everything I spend (ie income tax and goods and services tax) then they should be spending that money to look after everyone in terms of education and health care and law and order.
Some things should not be run for profit... police, prisons, education, healthcare, old folks homes, water and electricity... I also think if there are factors that make some services unprofitable then the government should step in and take over or provide those services and upgrade them to the point they could become profitable.
Here in New Zealand we used to have a decent rail service, but these days it is in tatters... being a long narrow country rail connections make sense.
The south island of NZ is long and narrow and it would not be safe to drive from one end to the other in a day, but for instance there is a rail line going from top to bottom and across the middle in a few places too.
Here in Dunedin a few years ago decided to replace our Rugby stadium with a covered stadium. Our university offered to pay a portion of the cost if it was made closer to the university campus and our government graciously didn't contribute anything so the rate payers paid most of the cost.
I am not a huge sports fan so I didn't really care, but now it is built it has been very successful with concerts and other events held there that wont be cancelled because of the weather.
Beside the new stadium is a rail line heading out to the port of dunedin and I think it would be money well spent to put a train station there with airstairs over to the stadium... that way you could buy a ticket to a rugby game or a concert or event anywhere in the south island... turn up to the nearest railway station and get on a train that takes you right to the stadium... no car chaos, no parking issues, just go in to the venue and come back when it finishes and get on the right train and go home. You might even buy an open train ticket and spend the night in Dunedin and go home the next day or so if you want to keep partying.
The point is that private enterprise wont risk the costs involved, but the government could because they would see it as solving traffic issues during concerts as well as boosting public use of stadiums they build with public money and want to get returns on.
The point is that private enterprise can take risks but wont if there is no financial reward. A government can take failures and losses if it does something useful for society... and a government can be ruthless regarding staff numbers and deadlines if they want to be... generally the more transparent a department or project is the more efficient it becomes...
The second amendment gun love in the US is an example of half baked nonsense being treated as a great thing. No amount of
rifles and ammunition is going to defend some peasant from the lords using the state as a tool. If you analyze where the second
amendment comes from, it was all about organizing militias and not gun love.
It is interesting that gun love in the west is frowned upon but the love of cars or computers is just fine... despite the fact that cars and electronics probably kill more people in the west each year than guns do...