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barefootalways

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Reply with quote  #46 
Yes the Dems are just as bad as the right wing. I don't want to see any Dem and Rep ideology. I want new ways of thinking which no party has mentioned. We can learn a lot from many countries around the world if we just get our head out of our ass.

No Difference

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Reply with quote  #47 
Quote:
Originally Posted by barefootalways
Yes the Dems are just as bad as the right wing. I don't want to see any Dem and Rep ideology. I want new ways of thinking which no party has mentioned. We can learn a lot from many countries around the world if we just get our head out of our ass.



Would you kindly back those over-generalizing statements with some sort of facts or references?   It's one thing to cast vast and vague aspersions about freely, but it's a very different thing to offer examples of what you are talking about.

(Let's avoid long strings of cliches.  The last post was rife with them.)

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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
Robert

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Reply with quote  #48 
Maybe I am missing something, but there seems to a tendency in these discussions to focus in the most detailed way on domestic issues, particularly economics, and avoid any in-depth discussions on foreign policy. There are calls to reduce military spending (even the Pentagon wants some programs cut but cannot get Congress to go along) but little discussion about how to deal with this messy world, particularly the Islamic world. Just this week a war began in Mali and we have seen its effects in Algeria. Syria is a complete mess. Israel off and on threatens to attack Iran before it reaches nuclear bomb capability while Iran claims it has no interest in developing a nuclear weapon. The Israel-Palestinian conflict seems as far from being resolved as ever. We are finally out of Iraq but bombs are still going off there and the political problems remain unresolved. It looks like we will be out of Afghanistan by the end of 2014 although probably not completely and the conflict between the Taliban and others in that country appears to have no end. Pakistan seems to be both a friend and foe and has all kind of militant groups along with lots of nuclear weapons. Of course there are many other foreign policy issues to deal with as well. What will Justice Party candidates have to say about these issues? Will they simply say it is all the fault of Wall Street and not engage further? If they do, should anyone expect such candidates to be takes seriously. All the Justice Party pledge says is "End illegal wars of aggression; close most overseas bases; reduce the military budget and redirect money to the domestic economy." Not much to go on there.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #49 
Robert:  Your last post was off-topic.  Your issue is worthy, so please repost it to the appropriate forum and thread.


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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #50 
Alan:  Are you purposely ignoring my alternative suggestion that maybe the right to employment should be redirected to the right to an income?  You keep talking about the right of workers to have a job, which makes me think that you do not like my alternative approach.  If you disagree with this, please say why.
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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #51 
Alan, I apologize that I didn't realize that was a response to me.  I'll try to pay more attention.  Still friends?

I think the problem is that we still think in terms of the Puritan Work Ethic instead of the practical reality of how industrialization progresses.  And I wasn't trying to promote some kind of fantastic sci-fi futurist world where everyone sits around on their asses doing nothing.  I even suggested many of the activities people might enjoy doing with all their (then) free time rather than drudgery that can more easily be accomplished by machinery powered by natural electricity (solar).

Even 100 years ago, Maj. Clifford Douglas wrote a number of pieces supporting his theory of Social Credit, upon which much of this notion I am presenting is based.  He was not a science fiction writer, just a mechanical(?) engineer who thought humanity was wasting too much time and energy figuring out ways to keep the capitalist system operative, starvation and homelessness somehow addressed in the mix.

I am not suggesting that the JP, or you, or anyone else here support this alternative idea.  I believe it has merit because it would address the jobs issue by making that issue a non-issue.  It would allow real innovation to determine what products and services are offered, in service to humanity, rather than an increasingly tighter circle of capitalists hitting the brakes on the economy every time the profits from their casino slows down, and thus causing widespread suffering.   It would also obviate the pointless waste of energy expended to keep people working rather than allowing for a centrally-planned energy-efficient economy that would be able to supply necessities universally.

Compared to the Theory of Social Credit, Capitalism seems like the most inefficient way of producing and advancing the art of production.

(And Alan, please do NOT take any of this as personal injury.  I really, really do appreciate the work that you and other HONEST labor activists do every day.  Mine is just a question of paradigm in the first place.)

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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #52 
Alan:  I have always realized that the anti-semitic rantings of Social Credit's chief advocate would become an issue between us at some point.  Yes, it is true that this otherwise intelligent person came up with an idea that is tainted for no other reason than some slippage in his thinking, at moments, that came close to completely discrediting him.   I do not defend him or others who use Social Credit theory for purposes other than advancing what I think is a very appropriate idea.

It is also true, unfortunately, that later groups calling themselves Social Credit but having nothing in common with the idea, have chosen to latch onto the anti-semitic and irrational notions Clifford Douglas referenced in his various works.  These and other things he said and did, and the propaganda that has been advanced by selective choices of his ideas, are all bad.   As a Jew myself, I am offended by these.

But to discredit all of the idea simply because its main proponent was arrogant in his unworldliness about Jews (and I think some other minorities as well) is a bit irrational in itself.  I do believe he was right that industrialization tends toward more unemployment of manual labor.  In fact, I believe Marx also points to this.  The solution, whether under the name Social Credit or some other terminology we might better choose for this concept, bears at least an examination of any inherent value it might bring to the world.

I don't cringe when I travel the Interstate highways merely because, in some large part, the system was modeled on the Autobahn, which was one of Hitler's main projects.  I don't entirely reject space exploration simply because the rocket age that enabled it is based on a lot of work by former Nazi engineers and scientists who were essentially bought off by American spies.  I remember Jewish Americans buying VW beetles (the original Hitler car itself) and Mercedes Benzes in the 1960s.  Some of these were friends and relatives of my family.

There is a difference between an idea being good or bad, and a person who might be connected to that idea, whether good or bad.

From now on, however, I will use a different term of art in discussing the notion of economy that is core to Douglas's ideas.  I hope that helps.  Besides, I have a more streamlined version of it in my mind anyway, so perhaps a new naming might be appropriate anyway.

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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
Ben Eastwood

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Reply with quote  #53 

Alan, I thought you wanted to talk about full employment, but are continually going on about living wage jobs.  the tow are not the same thing, in fact the law requires that any jobs created by the government be low skilled low paying jobs to avoid competing with the private sector...  If you want to discuss living wage, or increasing the minimum wage that's great, but it isn't the same as full employment.

  I do support the idea that folks are entitled to the opportunity to make a living wage, but to impose a policy of full employment without dealing with the living wage will take us down a road of federally paid janitors, garbage men and the like in a federally funded caste system.  Full employment doesn't improve economic opportunity, it increases the likelyhood of an onerous system of enforced serfdom, a proletariat caste that is dependent on federally funded jobs. 


  As part of a larger goal to give folks a better opportunity to earn a living wage, I would say that there is potential to have full employment be a desired outcome, but I do not think it is a healthy goal in and of itself, without the other pieces in place to insure it doesn't head down that slippery slope.

  I believe a better goal, and platform for the party would be to say that all people have the right to the opportunity to earn a living wage.  


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We came, we saw, we gathered signatures, we sued, we gathered signatures, we got Rocky on the Ballot in Vermont. That was the easy part, now we have to get this Justice Party Started!
Ben Eastwood

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Reply with quote  #54 

Alan, you seem to have a problem making your points without misrepresenting what other people say.  It is the full employment act, not my personal wish, that mandates that the any jobs created be low paying jobs.  Perhaps you should read the law yourself?  Which is why full employment in and of itself as a plank, is meaningless. 

  I do think there should be public works projects that help rebuild the infrastructure, and do put folks to work, and I think they could be a mixture of public and private jobs, but I think, to repeat myself, that a living wage is far more important than full employment, and that a full employment mandate, without any sort of safeguards like a living wage, will lead to companies laying off folks who then must go to the govt for a job, which could turn into them being put into a labor pool which the government pays them minimum wage (or less) and the same company that laid them off contracts with the govt' to have those same employess that used to enjoy labor protection, and benefits, and a living wage, are now doing their old jobs for a government pittance.  That is full employment under the corporate hegemony.  Some places have tried it, it was called workfare. 

  Even if we do get a living wage passed, and all the sudden everybody is making whatever the living wage is, what will stop that from just becoming the mechanism of hyper inflation?  So, everybody is making at least 14 bucks an hour, but a loaf of bread is 7 bucks, and a gallon of milk is 8 bucks.  How do we prevent that from happening? Put pricing controls in place? Ok, but the increase in labor cost will drive up production costs.  How do we address that?  Federal subsidies? How do we decide who gets them?  How do we pay for them? 

  The peace dividend?  That's how I would do it, cut the military by 3/4 and end foreign aggression and imperialism, and take that money and put 1/3 of the savings into social programs like universal healthcare, a wpa type project to rebuild and modernize our energy infrastructure and living wage subsidies, put 1/3 into a renewed marshal plan and department of peace, and help build up the infrastructure around the world, increase the fertility of the middle east through huge irrigation projects like Henry Wallace suggested back in 51, and take the other 1/3 of the peace dividend and return it to taxpayers, through a progressive tax program that doesn't tax anything up to the living wage level and subsidizes those below the poverty level up to a living wage, but taxes money above the living wage level in a progressive manner.  That would lower taxes for most Americans, and insure that they do not live in poverty. 

 


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We came, we saw, we gathered signatures, we sued, we gathered signatures, we got Rocky on the Ballot in Vermont. That was the easy part, now we have to get this Justice Party Started!
Ben Eastwood

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Reply with quote  #55 
Quote:
Originally Posted by No Difference

The basis is that it is not a job or employment that a human is entitled to, but rather a source of income that a human is entitled to.   In turn, that is because it is wrong to force a human being -- and their family -- to suffer from hunger, homelessness, or difficulty in access to education and health care.

I'm not sure I like the concept that people have to perform some kind of labor or service in order to obtain the means by which to purchase essential needs of life.  Therefore, I propose that there be a national income that covers the basic expenses of life; in very practical economic terms, this will enable the public to consume what the economy produces, which is also important to avoid unnecessary warehousing and waste related to unconsumed production.



Now you're talking more my language.  Insure a basic level of sustainable living, allow, and encourage people to pursue whatever accomplishments they want to to enrich themselves, their communities and allow them to pursue making more money, if they desire, but not having folks prevented from pursuing their dreams because of worries about the cost of living. Have you read Ecotopia? 

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We came, we saw, we gathered signatures, we sued, we gathered signatures, we got Rocky on the Ballot in Vermont. That was the easy part, now we have to get this Justice Party Started!
Ben Eastwood

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Reply with quote  #56 
Quote:
Originally Posted by alanmaki

Ben; I do find it extremely interesting that a proponent of Social Credit, No Difference, is "talking your language."
Well, mayhaps if you'd bother to listen to what I have to say instead of diving off on polemic tyrades on how anyone not as far left of the political spectrum, and twisting folks words around and misrepresenting what they say, you might be less baffled.  Just because I am not as left as Alan Maki, does not mean I am not a progressive.  In fact, I am not a Progressive, because the Progressive party is too closely alligned with the Dems in VT, and refuse to challenge them. 



 just like the "forever" postage stamps.

 

How will you redeem your forever postage stamps if the post office goes out of business?



It is very important to understand just what constitutes a "living wage" and obviously you don't understand what a living wage is because you toss around the figure of $14.00 an hour (while Rocky Anderson thinks the Minimum Wage should be ten dollars an hour; a dollar better than the $9.00 an hour Obama promised but never delivered).

  Actually, you should really read up on living wage laws already on the books in some areas.  In Burlington VT the living wage law is $13.94 for employers that provide insurance, and $17.71 for those that do not. 



Cost of living. Hmmmmmmm. There is a concept you don't seem to want to discuss at all even though we have an entire government bureaucracy known as the United States Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics constantly tracking all cost of living factors.

Uhm, Alan, you're doing it again, Alan.  I have never said I don't want to talk about cost of living. 

Here is another concept you don't seem to be too eager to talk about: standard of living.

Alan, you really need to stop making stuff up.  How am I not interested in talking about standard of living? I was trying to respect your request earlier to keep on the topic of full employment.  Standard of living would be a great topic. 
Common sense, if not economic sense--- and justice, should tell us no worker should be expected to work for any less than what it cost to live, eh?

Repeating someone's basic stance from other posts in a tone that suggests they oppose it is not a way to build coalitions Alan. 

If any employer doesn't want to pay a worker a wage based on what it cost that worker to live then perhaps that employer should consider doing the job himself/herself. Lol!!!!!!! Wouldn't that be a hoot watching the Wall Street crowd having to work for once?

Personally, I'd like to see them chopping wood in prison.

Never mind your mythical hyper-inflation you want to attribute to higher wages; let's point out that workers not having living wages in line with all cost of living factors is what results in the dreaded bust cycle of capitalism which even our semi-liberal friend Paul Krugman is calling our present economic predicament a depression.

What is mythical about hyper inflation.  I am not saying that a living wage would be the sole factor, but none of the factors, such as printing money wantonly, would be solved by zero unemployment policies. Look at the parallels between the economy now and the weimar republic.  What was the exchange rate when they reset their currency? A trillion papermarks for one gold reichsmark.  Hyperinflation is real, and the war debt we now incrue is going to be a damaging to our economy in the long run as tthe war reparations were to the Germans.

Global capitalism is in a depression--- capitalism is collapsing before our very eyes; on the skids to oblivion. 

No, the entire global economy is, capitalists and communists alike.


Capitalism's worst features being the source ofall of our problems: exploitation of labor and the rape of Mother Nature in creating massive wealth for the parasitical Wall Street few.

Yeah, because workers in the soviet union were not exploited, and the Russians have a great environmental record.

Quite frankly, we need these Wall Street parasites who use unemployment to keep wages down and profits up about as much as my dog Fred needs ticks and fleas.

I agree, but that is different from saying that capitalism is inherently bad.  Every corrupt system has parasites, which is why we need some sorts of regulations and controls.  We don't have to throw the baby out with the bathwater. 

Making the government responsible for full employment at real living wages will help us "get over the hump" as we challenge Wall Street for political and economic power and set course for a sane socialist economic system where the human needs of people always come first.

Who said anything about wanting a 'sane socialist system' that has never been part of the Justice Party discussion.  America doesn't want a socialist system.  A socialist system isn't the only system where human needs and the needs of the people come first.  A just and fair system doesn't only include socialism, and using the term socialism will kill the party. Maybe it is an exercise in semantics,  I do believe in many socialist ideals, but I also believe in freedom of opportunity, the American dream.  It is the corrupting big corporations that have locked out competition, stifled economic opportunity and hijacked our government, but, that doesn't mean that the form of government is at fault.  Cronyism happens in every form of government.  Again, the soviets and north Koreans, not so great putting human needs first.


You sure want to evade talking about the government's responsibility for full employment and workers' rights to living wage jobs--- sound a little like we would be getting too close to socialism for you, Ben? Or maybe just a we bit too progressive?

Ben, have you given any thought to if you are progressive?

Really Allen?  Again?  What's with the 'right baiting'?  I am certainly to the left of Bernie Sanders and the Progressive party of VT.  If that isn't far enough left for you I guess it is too bad.  I have been a proud member of 3 different unions, and was fired for attempting to organize the ambulance service I worked for, even filed a complaint with the NLRB, and then found out how impotent labor has become in this country. Sigh.
Are you sure you are Justice?  Because Justice Party is NOT a socialist party.  Going so far left to be politically unviable is the wrong direction.  There is a balance, and we need to strike it.  Even here in VT, the most progressive state in the union, we only have an handful of progressives in office, and most of them are DemoProgs.  Heck, even Bernie the socialist has bought into the military industrial bs.  Vermont did have a socialist candidate on the ballot, Peta Lindsay.  Maybe your brand of antagonism wold be more productive helping them, they only got like half the votes Rocky did.  Do you really think going further away from the ideals American Voters hold dear will win any elections? 


 


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We came, we saw, we gathered signatures, we sued, we gathered signatures, we got Rocky on the Ballot in Vermont. That was the easy part, now we have to get this Justice Party Started!
Robert

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Reply with quote  #57 
It seems to me that the problem of sustainability should be addressed here. They say we passed the Earth's capacity to sustain us economically in the 1980s and that we would need one and half Earths to sustain present economic activity. Americans are already using far more than our share of resources based on the world's population. Many people argue our economy now is not sustainable at the present level of resource use. Now if you bring every worker in America up to a living wage (let's say $30,000 per year) that sounds like we would be consuming even far more stuff than we now consume. Another question is: should everyone in the world be entitled to this wage? Or, should Americans continue to be far richer than most other inhabitants of the planet. I think we should aim to bring up the people on the bottom. But, to be sustainable I think that means those on top (upper 50% perhaps) would have to have a lowering of their standard of living. There is only one Earth. How do we go forward without the whole thing collapsing from climate change (disruption), resource depletion, poisoning of ecosystems, etc which is now going on at an alarming rate. Neither capitalism, nor socialism, nor any other economic system anyone has devised appears to be up to the task. I don't expect anyone here to have the answers but I think we should be aware that we need answers.
No Difference

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Reply with quote  #58 
So now Alan is as frustrated as I am with the party direction (whatever it is).  As Alan points out in a previous post, the NDP has room for "liberals, progressives and leftists" -- it doesn't point to room for rightwing ideologies though.  (That is fine with me, and why I would most definitely be registered NDP if I lived in Canada!)

So, it is Rocky Anderson who has a hand in the leadership of this group.  My impression from responses on this forum in the past was that the Rocky campaign was sort of separate from the JP.  It seemed like people were saying that the JP was meant to be a separate endeavor, with Rocky only in an advisory role.  Now I am getting a much different picture from Alan's post.

As I have posted many times around this forum, I do not follow what people mean by trying to merge Left with Right.  That is what is wrong with the basic philosophy of this group (Party).  I am beginning to re-evaluate whether I want to continue to follow the JP story, or see if there is something else out there that falls more in line with Left values (increasing equality and democracy).  

I am not looking for perfection.  I am looking for sensible, and that would suit me just fine.

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Cooperation, coordination, and clarity are essential to creating a political party based on equality. Cliches and equivocations will not move this or any other party forward.
Robert

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Reply with quote  #59 
Even if you wanted to merge left and right within a party I don't think you could do it. That is because the gap now is unbridgeable. Before LBJ signed the civil rights legislation and the southern Democrats bolted it was common to merge left and right within a political party. In fact, both the Democratic and Republican parties had members on the left and right. In the Republican Party the people on the left got driven out by those on the right. I think we have to accept today's politics and not try to go back to another era in the past. The left and right do not coexist within any political party today. You have to choose whether your party is on the left or right. The Justice Party is obviously on the left. You can count on it staying that way no matter what anyone says to the contrary. It is what is.
PaulStephens

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Reply with quote  #60 
The state of so-called "labor economics" is dismal.  It's usually taught and understood from the standpoint of employers, or larger national goals or standards like "economic efficiency" or "welfare economics" which deals with people's condition and how govt policy and expenditures may "optimize" the public good.  Each party, of course, understands "public good" differently.  And it's usually "individualistic", pro-capitalist people who either write and pass the laws (with the help of ALEC, et al), or design the institutions which will carry out the welfare policies. 

I'd never been "on welfare" until the past few years when I started getting Food Stamps, Medicaid, and my minimal Social Security ($530/month) and now SSI - another 200, but the total you can receive is "capped" at about $800. so getting $200 in SSI resulted in my Food Stamps being reduced by $100!  I'm far below the poverty level, yet they nicle and dime me out of every dollar I apply for, and if I should lie or simply make a mistake, I could lose everything but the Social Security.  Even the Medicaid is only a "loan," so if I should inherit or otherwise "win the lottery", I'm supposed to pay it back!  Unbeliievable. 

To beat the Democrats, all this stuff needs to be disclosed, as well as their complicity in it - trading our benefits and health for campaign contributions.  I was hoping the Justice Party could represent stuff like this. 

"Full employment?'  Sounds like slavery to me.  What we need is a guaranteed subsistence income and services for everyone, and let workers keep all of what they earn- at least up to $50,000 or something.  No "health insurance" rackets; no bankster "retirement plans".  But our health and survival should never be held hostage to the capitalists, as it is, now. 
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