What is uneconomic under capitalism does not become economic under socialism.

Kay McVey katsummerland at yahoo.com.au
Fri Dec 13 22:19:36 MST 2002

Mark Jones wrote:

“Similarly, in Xanadu unemployment may be seen as
intrinsically inefficient, but this is a subjective
value-judgment. It means that Xanadu's economy is
going to be burdened with artifical make-work schemes
producing little or nothing of any value and probably
subtratcing from the net national wealth in all manner
of ways, purely to keep headline unemployment down
because this is another 'social priority'.”

Kay asks:

Why would there be any unemployment or underemployment
in Xanadu?  Why would there be artifical make work
schemes?  Surely decisions would be made to share the
work around, shorten the workweek, etc.  That is each
person would only need to be involved in production
activities to the extent required to serve the needs
of the society/community.  They would then be free to
pursue their own interests or to engage in other
socially useful activities as well in militia training
in case Slumsville departs from peaceful co-existence
and seeks to impose its system.

I agree with Henry on this. These two societies
operate under different economic and political
dictates.  Although I don’t agree with Henry’s
statement that:

“What the USSR should have done was to force the US to
compete under socialists conditions and rules, as it
did between 1946-1956, and measure success in terms of
equality and justice. But revisionism took over the
USSR and from that point on Soviet capitalism under
socialist clothing did not have a chance.”

Kay asks:
Is this the same Soviet Union that quashed the
uprisings in East Germany in 1953 and Hungary in 1956?
 Or the Soviet Union that denied its citizens the
right to travel not only outside the country but also
internally?  Perhaps it the Soviet Union that sent
people to the Gulag for daring to question government
policy or the one that imprisoned the leader of the
Red Orchestra, Leopold Trepper, because he knew of
Stalin’s betrayal of clandestine agents in Germany and
Europe but also had supposedly spent too long in the
“West” and was infected with anti-socialist views?

It seems to me that it is a bit difficult to stand for
equality and justice internationally when in your own
“socialist state” the practice is distinctly unequal
and unjust for the majority of the citizens.  Equality
and justice are the basis of a free society which the
Soviet Union demonstrably was not.

To set up the Soviet Union as the prototype of
emergent socialist society is to significantly limit
the discussion.



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