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Russell Brand vs Jeremy Paxman

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  • secretsamsecretsam Posts: 4,948
    rjsterry wrote:
    The balance between party and constituents is a difficult one: for example, your party advocates rationalising parts of the NHS by concentrating services in fewer, larger hospitals, and this may well make sense on a nationwide basis, but an MP never got re-elected for allowing the closure of their local hospital.

    It makes sense on a local basis as well. For many hospitals it's a real struggle to maintain certain services due to the challenges of maintaining staffing levels and ensuring that clinicians have enough activity to keep their skills up to date. Centralisation will happen, whether politicians like it or not. Everyone in the NHS and healthcare in general knows it.
    daviesee wrote:
    Try living in a constituency where they would vote a monkey in if it wore the correct colour of badge.

    I do

    It's just a hill. Get over it.
  • morstarmorstar Posts: 5,747

    It's interesting stuff. I'm all for a free market where the dynamics of competition actually work. In the case of both utilities and rail they simply don't. Subsequently I don't think they should remain structured as they are. Free market only works when you have the option to totally withdraw your custom if the service proposition is totally intolerable. With rail you have absolutely no choice of carrier on most routes and the energy firms operate a cartel so you may as well have no choice.

    The last few years have demonstrated beyond doubt that the energy markets are not competitive and that both blue and red governments have absolutely no influence over them.

    I can't see them actually being re-nationalised but if they were to be, the challenge is then how do you keep them lean and evolutionary.
  • morstar wrote:

    It's interesting stuff. I'm all for a free market where the dynamics of competition actually work. In the case of both utilities and rail they simply don't. Subsequently I don't think they should remain structured as they are. Free market only works when you have the option to totally withdraw your custom if the service proposition is totally intolerable. With rail you have absolutely no choice of carrier on most routes and the energy firms operate a cartel so you may as well have no choice.

    The last few years have demonstrated beyond doubt that the energy markets are not competitive and that both blue and red governments have absolutely no influence over them.

    I can't see them actually being re-nationalised but if they were to be, the challenge is then how do you keep them lean and evolutionary.

    That was my feeling on the mention of Philip Green in Brand's article, he complains his democratic vote has little power but in the case of corporate tax for retaliers everyone has 'voting' power everytime they choose to spend some money. It's up to people to shop elsewhere if they aren't happy with the situation.
  • DesB3rdDesB3rd Posts: 285
    The talk of the failure of democracy " 'cos none of the parties represent the people" takes me back to uni where I read a little about "socialist democracy" (as practiced in The Democratic Republic of X.) The basic premise was a given truth that The Party (whichever particular far left niche they filled) represented the best interests of the people, thus a multi-party system, full of beguiling right of centre types :twisted: , really only presented the people with an opportunity to do themselves a disservice, hence it was better for everyone if democracy was kept in-house i.e. the party.

    Personally I find it hard to believe that anyone could be so intellectually assured, thus I have to assume this is a concept cynically worked backward from a general desire for authoritarian control!
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 15,903
    Those who complain about democracy not working are being a bit disingenuous. They mean they don't like the result. They would be happy with the system if they got the result they craved.
  • rjsterryrjsterry Posts: 24,282
    I see Mr Brand was out last night putting his words into practice. Seemed to be even more vague and unfocused than the Occupy protest. And waving anti-Tory placards outside Buckingham Palace just exemplifies the futility of this approach.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • ProssPross Posts: 34,870
    morstar wrote:

    It's interesting stuff. I'm all for a free market where the dynamics of competition actually work. In the case of both utilities and rail they simply don't. Subsequently I don't think they should remain structured as they are. Free market only works when you have the option to totally withdraw your custom if the service proposition is totally intolerable. With rail you have absolutely no choice of carrier on most routes and the energy firms operate a cartel so you may as well have no choice.

    The last few years have demonstrated beyond doubt that the energy markets are not competitive and that both blue and red governments have absolutely no influence over them.

    I can't see them actually being re-nationalised but if they were to be, the challenge is then how do you keep them lean and evolutionary.

    I agree with this. I think there's going to become a lot of pressure on re-nationalising power, it's a real hot potato and only going to get worse. Not so sure on rail, at least they have to bid for the franchises - the better option may be to have fare increases being a heavily weighted factor in the bidding process. Things weren't exactly great with a nationalised rail network at any point in my lifetime pre-privatisation either. At least the rail infrastructure is now back in public hands. The one that really makes no sense and never did is water / sewerage companies as there you have to use their 'product' and have no choice over who to use.

    As for Brand, I heard Nick Robinson being interviewed on Radio 2 last night and he was very critical of Brands comments. He basically suggested that it was an insult to those people still prepared to die for a democracy like we have and that while there are definitely politicians in it for their own benefit (as there are in any profession) there are still a significant number that are there to fight for their principles. I would suggest he is right, it's easy to be cynical but even as someone with little interest in politics I still hear plenty of politicians (on all sides of the political spectrum) arguing for what they think is right even if it isn't popular. I suspect the issue is they are the ones who don't make it to the top a lot of the time for that very reason.
  • This is a very thought provoking talk to watch if you can spare the time. It's worth the watch.
    "That's it! You people have stood in my way long enough. I'm going to clown college! " - Homer
  • Peddle Up!Peddle Up! Posts: 2,040
    This is a very thought provoking talk to watch if you can spare the time. It's worth the watch.

    That was fascinating. Thanks for sharing.
    Purveyor of "up" :)
  • I've always wanted to stand for my local council with absolutely no manifesto, bar that I would put every vote I have to the community to choose what I do - log onto my site and select how you want me to vote. I then take the majorty view back to the council chamber.

    I know it's idealistic and likely won't work for all sorts of reasons but it would be complete democracy, not a republic that we live in in the UK (like all other democracies I can think of).
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    Ballysmate wrote:
    Those who complain about democracy not working are being a bit disingenuous. They mean they don't like the result. They would be happy with the system if they got the result they craved.

    Hmmmm.

    Please put an x next to one of the following candidates

    A. Capitalist
    B. Capitalist
    C. Capitalist
    D. Capitalist
    E. Green Capitalist

    Once you have selected your candidate, hope they will represent you, as they have carte blanche for four years, with no more input from you. Good luck!
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    At the last general election I voted for the candidate that works very hard in his local constituency. Not according to my normal voting pattern but because he was far and away the best candidate for the job. All the candidates were invited to our local day centre to address and answer questions by those who have learning difficulties. One didn't turn up, one waffled and one knew what he was talking about and engaged with his audience. Since he was elected, he has not let me down, or the disabled people I work with...
  • ballysmateballysmate Posts: 15,903
    meursault wrote:
    Ballysmate wrote:
    Those who complain about democracy not working are being a bit disingenuous. They mean they don't like the result. They would be happy with the system if they got the result they craved.

    Hmmmm.

    Please put an x next to one of the following candidates

    A. Capitalist
    B. Capitalist
    C. Capitalist
    D. Capitalist
    E. Green Capitalist

    Once you have selected your candidate, hope they will represent you, as they have carte blanche for four years, with no more input from you. Good luck!


    Well the answer is simple. Either stand yourself or put up a candidate. Or is it that your views are restricted to too small a minority?
    The alternative is to stand on the sidelines moaning and whinging.

    Democracy is the best we've got. Some countries have tried unaccountable dictatorships, with unhappy results.
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    Ballysmate wrote:
    meursault wrote:
    Ballysmate wrote:
    Those who complain about democracy not working are being a bit disingenuous. They mean they don't like the result. They would be happy with the system if they got the result they craved.

    Hmmmm.

    Please put an x next to one of the following candidates

    A. Capitalist
    B. Capitalist
    C. Capitalist
    D. Capitalist
    E. Green Capitalist

    Once you have selected your candidate, hope they will represent you, as they have carte blanche for four years, with no more input from you. Good luck!


    Well the answer is simple. Either stand yourself or put up a candidate. Or is it that your views are restricted to too small a minority?
    The alternative is to stand on the sidelines moaning and whinging.

    Democracy is the best we've got. Some countries have tried unaccountable dictatorships, with unhappy results.

    Or is it that your views are restricted to too small a minority?

    This, sort of. The working class don't realise they are a class. That is, their consciousness as a class is very weak. So we are the majority we just don't know it.

    Democracy is the best we've got. Some countries have tried unaccountable dictatorships, with unhappy results.

    Indeed, it just isn't very good as it is, because it isn't a real democracy. Democracy should be dynamic, a living breathing thing with all involved in the process, all the time. Let's take some responsibilty here. For class reasons above, not going to happen until the revolution. Real genuine democracy is also the way to prevent dictatorships.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • Mikey23Mikey23 Posts: 5,306
    Why pray isn't it a real democracy?
    All involved in the process... Isn't that a tad idealistic? I vote them in, I get involved with them in so far as it affects me and my community and I hold them accountable for what they have done. Other than that I delegate responsibility to them and expect them to do their job while I'm doing mine. In the same way I let bankers bank and energy companies manage energy. I suspect that's what most do and it isn't apathy...

    As for your concept of class conscienceness and revolution it all sounds a little old fashioned. I'm not sure the world is actually like that or perhaps ever was outside of the mind of a few academic thinkers
  • team47bteam47b Posts: 6,424
    It's a tyranny by the majority.

    or if your prefer an ochlocracy by the few.
    my isetta is a 300cc bike
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    Mikey23 wrote:
    Why pray isn't it a real democracy?
    All involved in the process... Isn't that a tad idealistic? I vote them in, I get involved with them in so far as it affects me and my community and I hold them accountable for what they have done. Other than that I delegate responsibility to them and expect them to do their job while I'm doing mine. In the same way I let bankers bank and energy companies manage energy. I suspect that's what most do and it isn't apathy...

    As for your concept of class conscienceness and revolution it all sounds a little old fashioned. I'm not sure the world is actually like that or perhaps ever was outside of the mind of a few academic thinkers

    I am talking about a much higher level of democracy. The present mode of production is not for ever. It will eventually be replaced by another one, probably socialism as no other mode has been suggested. The word Soviet means workers council. As the workers will 'own' the mode of production they will be responsible for making decisions within it, democratically. Technology exists now to implement a dynamic democratic system with ease, it's just a mouse click or touch screen away. The majority making decisions for the majority does not require anybody else to do this 'job' for them. Just because the world was not able to implement socialism from 1917 onwards, does not mean it won't move on from the current out of date system. We just learn the lessons from that failure and make it better.

    Imagine a world that was striving for much more than making Lord Gates-Sainsbury- Cola yet more money. Space exploration, curing disease, arts, ending poverty and on and on it goes. We could actually use maximum human potential.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • symosymo Posts: 1,743
    meursault wrote:
    Mikey23 wrote:
    Why pray isn't it a real democracy?
    All involved in the process... Isn't that a tad idealistic? I vote them in, I get involved with them in so far as it affects me and my community and I hold them accountable for what they have done. Other than that I delegate responsibility to them and expect them to do their job while I'm doing mine. In the same way I let bankers bank and energy companies manage energy. I suspect that's what most do and it isn't apathy...

    As for your concept of class conscienceness and revolution it all sounds a little old fashioned. I'm not sure the world is actually like that or perhaps ever was outside of the mind of a few academic thinkers

    I am talking about a much higher level of democracy. The present mode of production is not for ever. It will eventually be replaced by another one, probably socialism as no other mode has been suggested. The word Soviet means workers council. As the workers will 'own' the mode of production they will be responsible for making decisions within it, democratically. Technology exists now to implement a dynamic democratic system with ease, it's just a mouse click or touch screen away. The majority making decisions for the majority does not require anybody else to do this 'job' for them. Just because the world was not able to implement socialism from 1917 onwards, does not mean it won't move on from the current out of date system. We just learn the lessons from that failure and make it better.

    Imagine a world that was striving for much more than making Lord Gates-Sainsbury- Cola yet more money. Space exploration, curing disease, arts, ending poverty and on and on it goes. We could actually use maximum human potential.

    Try the last Soviet nation, it really doesn't work. Animal Farm and the greed that is shown within it, is unfortunately what humans are like.

    We need a true meritocracy, not one where the elite continue to be allowed to be bailed out when it goes wrong; and where the elite are allowed to give each other jobs.
    +++++++++++++++++++++
    we are the proud, the few, Descendents.

    Panama - finally putting a nail in the economic theory of the trickle down effect.
  • davieseedaviesee Posts: 6,386
    symo wrote:
    Animal Farm and the greed that is shown within it, is unfortunately what humans are like.
    This is the part that idealists wont get past.
    Enough of a percentage of humans are greedy enough to make any system corrupt.
    None of the above should be taken seriously, and certainly not personally.
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    Yes, Orwell wrote an excellent novel on how Stalinism corrupted The Soviet Union. The pigs became a bureaucracy due to restricting democracy by altering the constitution as they wanted. A genuine democracy protects itself against this happening. We learn from the past and improve.

    It's not an idealistic notion, greed is caused by capitalism, you are not trying to breathe more air than me, because air is not a commodity. Humans are not greedy by nature. Humans lived in a mode of production, primitive communism, or tribalism, with no private property, working as groups for over three hundred thousand years, many many more than capitalism.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,674
    meursault wrote:
    greed is caused by capitalism
    That is a classic Brandism - an aphorism that sounds meaningful, and is lapped up by the believers: but there is absolutely no evidence at all to suggest that it is even remotely true.
    It is conceivable that capitalism is caused by greed, of course, but then wouldn't communism (and I assume you are explicitly arguing for communism, it certainly looks like it) be the same - after all it's just people demanding something that someone else has, and what is greed if not that?
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    bompington wrote:
    meursault wrote:
    greed is caused by capitalism
    That is a classic Brandism - an aphorism that sounds meaningful, and is lapped up by the believers: but there is absolutely no evidence at all to suggest that it is even remotely true.
    It is conceivable that capitalism is caused by greed, of course, but then wouldn't communism (and I assume you are explicitly arguing for communism, it certainly looks like it) be the same - after all it's just people demanding something that someone else has, and what is greed if not that?

    Not necessarily communism, but it's the only mode suggested by any philosopher of any weight. I would say over three hundred thousand years of non human greed is pretty good evidence.

    Where is your evidence that humans are naturally greedy? That is a tired old concept sold to us by the ruling class.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • davieseedaviesee Posts: 6,386
    meursault wrote:
    Where is your evidence that humans are naturally greedy? That is a tired old concept sold to us by the ruling class.
    Suggest a point in recorded history where someone hasnt successfully fought to be top dog.
    Or had it put upon them by others with ambition.
    There has always been a ruling class. How they become ruling is irrelevant.

    Small analogy. I bet there was top dogs and losers when you were at school. There was no capitalism involved there.
    None of the above should be taken seriously, and certainly not personally.
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    daviesee wrote:
    meursault wrote:
    Where is your evidence that humans are naturally greedy? That is a tired old concept sold to us by the ruling class.
    Suggest a point in recorded history where someone hasnt successfully fought to be top dog.
    Or had it put upon them by others with ambition.
    There has always been a ruling class. How they become ruling is irrelevant.

    Small analogy. I bet there was top dogs and losers when you were at school. There was no capitalism involved there.

    I didn't say there wouldn't be any leadership. I don't see how/why you mix leadership and greed.

    Although it was along time since I was at school, it did not pre date capitalism. So there was capitalism involved, as it involves all society.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • davieseedaviesee Posts: 6,386
    meursault wrote:
    I didn't say there wouldn't be any leadership. I don't see how/why you mix leadership and greed.
    ...and we are back to human nature.
    meursault wrote:
    Although it was along time since I was at school, it did not pre date capitalism. So there was capitalism involved, as it involves all society.
    Pretty certain there was no capitalism at my school. In fact I would say it was 90% socialist. There was bullying, cool kid's and peer pressure.
    Human nature.
    None of the above should be taken seriously, and certainly not personally.
  • rjsterryrjsterry Posts: 24,282
    meursault wrote:
    Yes, Orwell wrote an excellent novel on how Stalinism corrupted The Soviet Union. The pigs became a bureaucracy due to restricting democracy by altering the constitution as they wanted. A genuine democracy protects itself against this happening. We learn from the past and improve.

    It's not an idealistic notion, greed is caused by capitalism, you are not trying to breathe more air than me, because air is not a commodity. Humans are not greedy by nature. Humans lived in a mode of production, primitive communism, or tribalism, with no private property, working as groups for over three hundred thousand years, many many more than capitalism.

    This is fantasy: the oldest known censored sapiens sapiens fossils are 'only' 200,000 years old. There's also academic disagreement as to whether these early humans were behaviourally modern, or just anatomically modern. I'm interested to know how you've been able to deduce such complex social structures as primitive communism from a few fragments of fossilised skeleton.

    By the way, there is evidence of the practice of slavery in Shang dynasty China (18th-12th century BCE), Sumer, Ancient Egypt, Akkadian Empire, Assyria, Ancient India, Rome, Greece, the pre-Columbian. Americas, in fact most places there were people, and all the way up to the present day. No private property? If you can own another human being, the rest of it is pretty easy.
    1985 Mercian King of Mercia - work in progress (Hah! Who am I kidding?)
    Pinnacle Monzonite

    Part of the anti-growth coalition
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    rjsterry wrote:
    meursault wrote:
    Yes, Orwell wrote an excellent novel on how Stalinism corrupted The Soviet Union. The pigs became a bureaucracy due to restricting democracy by altering the constitution as they wanted. A genuine democracy protects itself against this happening. We learn from the past and improve.

    It's not an idealistic notion, greed is caused by capitalism, you are not trying to breathe more air than me, because air is not a commodity. Humans are not greedy by nature. Humans lived in a mode of production, primitive communism, or tribalism, with no private property, working as groups for over three hundred thousand years, many many more than capitalism.

    This is fantasy: the oldest known censored sapiens sapiens fossils are 'only' 200,000 years old. There's also academic disagreement as to whether these early humans were behaviourally modern, or just anatomically modern. I'm interested to know how you've been able to deduce such complex social structures as primitive communism from a few fragments of fossilised skeleton.

    By the way, there is evidence of the practice of slavery in Shang dynasty China (18th-12th century BCE), Sumer, Ancient Egypt, Akkadian Empire, Assyria, Ancient India, Rome, Greece, the pre-Columbian. Americas, in fact most places there were people, and all the way up to the present day. No private property? If you can own another human being, the rest of it is pretty easy.

    Thought I was being conservative (extra small c)

    It is estimated that the first members of the human family (hominins) lived in Africa about 6 or 7 million years ago. They are believed to have been forest-dwelling, perhaps walking upright in the trees or when on the ground.

    http://www.nhm.ac.uk/nature-online/life/human-origins/modern-human-evolution/when/index.html

    Slavery was one mode of production, but primitive communism was before that, and for many thousands of years. Private property generally refers to material objects or commodities.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    We could argue about the number of years, but my point is that capitalism is only 300 years old roughly, there have been other modes around for much longer, as will there be others in the future.

    I am attempting, to get you to imagine something other than capitalism. It really cannot be that difficult, with our vast potential and abstract concept skills.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
  • bompingtonbompington Posts: 7,674
    meursault wrote:
    We could argue about the number of years, but my point is that capitalism is only 300 years old roughly,
    So there was no greed before the 1700s then? :shock:
  • meursaultmeursault Posts: 1,433
    bompington wrote:
    meursault wrote:
    We could argue about the number of years, but my point is that capitalism is only 300 years old roughly,
    So there was no greed before the 1700s then? :shock:

    Yes, during slavery and feudalism. Any mode where there is private property.
    Superstition sets the whole world in flames; philosophy quenches them.

    Voltaire
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