I’m hoping to get some good responses. What is the use of government? How should it be handled? For whose benefit should government be formed?
If you are a Democrat:
Govt should be for the benefit of the citizens governed. The use of govt is to provide for the common good. It should be handled democratically, primarily.
Or, if you are a Trumpublican:
Govt is for the benefit of Trumps (and maybe for some cronies who are sufficiently obsequious). Govt is a mechanism used to increase profits for Trump organizations, and for maximally inflating and protecting Trump’s ego. Govt should be run autocratically by Trump.
Government should benefit all citizens, not just the rich, not just to make the rich richer, or those who serve and support said government, but rather to serve all through various programs that benefit everyone.
Government is not just “not for” the rich, it’s to protect us from the rich. The concept of government is a recognition that it takes all sorts of people to keep peace and protect each other from evil. This includes differently skilled people and people with different ideologies. The most obvious use of governments is the kind of things that don’t fit a system that trades peace and well-being for pain and suffering. Travel should be a shared cost, caring for each other should be based on some minimum level of health, air and water are shared so they should be protected, all of this requires defense against those who don’t like to share. Any individual might be a genius, so we should bring education and knowledge everywhere.
That’s a start
Government is the people and rules that a society lives by.
I heard a great quote many years ago, "The measure of a civilization is how it treats its weakest members.” I believe a government should be used to create a society that is measured as high as possible based on the quote.
Expanding the definition of ‘weakest members’ to include all future generations will result in environmental protections.
My intention in asking this question was to discuss that evil concept: SOCIALISM,
Far too many people have no understanding of what it is, nor do they realize that our government in the US is socialistic, whether they like it or not. In fact, all democracies are socialistic, and many governments that are not democracies. Our military is run on a purely SOCIALIST model. Public schools are SOCIALIST. State, city and municipal hospitals are SOCIALIST. Police departments are SOCIALIST. All government—federal, state and municipal~-is run on a purely SOCIALIST basis. All disaster aid is run on a SOCIALIST basis, as is welfare, aid to the homeless, prisons and jails, border control, state colleges and universities, road building and maintenance. Electricity and water utilities are run on a either a purely or semi-SOCIALIST basis. Food and drug safety is run on a SOCIALIST model. Government would collapse without SOCIALISM at its core. I would laugh if I weren‘t crying at the morons in this country who think we should end the SOCIALIST model and who go into paroxysms at the mention of anything that they deem SOCIALISM—which is defined as anything that helps people who are not wealthy.
In my opinion, government is to keep the population safe and functioning. It cannot possibly be done without SOCIALISM. We would have no government, no country, no military, no public schools, no safety services, no police forces, no border control, no traffic control, no space programs, no airline control without SOCIALISM. Many conservative types, like Trump and most Republicans think that if we give CAPITALISM free reign and end what they call SOCIALISM, everything will fall into place—(god will be in his heaven and all will be right with the world). This, to me, demonstrates their complete and utter ignorance about how governments operate and why we need them. Many Republicans think that SOCIALISM gives people a free ride and makes them lazy. The only people that kind of thinking gives a free ride to are capitalists. There has never been a pure capitalistic society throughout history. The most successful governments are mixed economies with some capitalism and a lot of SOCIALISM.
@loisl first, without confusing it with Communism, define what is evil about Socialism and Democratic Socialism.
I’m with you in that few know what Socialism is and what the various programs we have which are socialism, such as the fire department and the police, among other things. I agree pretty much with every you said, but I think the issue/problem is Socialism is for the rich and capitalism is for the rest of us, thus why the big fight from Repugs and the dotard against Socialism and the smearing of Bernie Sanders. They want the Vulgar to misunderstand what Socialism really is.
As someone very wise once said, capitalists want to socialize their expenses and losses and privatize profits. They are doing a good job of it.
Far too many people have no understanding of what it is, nor do they realize that our government in the US is socialistic, whether they like it or not. In fact, all democracies are socialistic, and many governments that are not democracies. Our military is run on a purely SOCIALIST model. Public schools are SOCIALIST. State, city and municipal hospitals are SOCIALIST. Police departments are SOCIALIST. All government—federal, state and municipal~-is run on a purely SOCIALIST basis.How so?
Because they are lazy?
Because they’ve been seduced by Hollywood and Boob Tube and shallow-gratification?
Because it’s easier listening to someone telling them what they want to hear, and what to think - than to actually think things through for themselves?
Because they are scared and clueless?
If people could judge ideas without labels or categories attached, they would make much better choices.
Anything labeled ‘socialism’ is never going to make it out of the gate because it has such a negative connotation. My friends use it as a swear word because they have no clue what it really means.
What we are hearing nowadays is that Socialism is pretty much the policies advocated for by Bernie Sanders and a some other Dem candidates on the furthest left of the field.
So things like:
- ending the profitization of necessary medical care.
- making healthcare available for all citizens
- having the attainment of a University Degree to be available (without going in to major debt) to all citizens capable of achieving one.
- absolutely addressing Climate Change AND providing a whole new economy of jobs and energy production and electric or other low carbon producing cars, and transportation, etc.
- requiring the carbon fuel industries to pay a fee for the carbon that they contribute to the atmosphere.
- advocating for universal background check for gun purchasers - and limiting the ownership of assault weapons.
- maintaining what is left of women making decisions about their own reproduction.
- promoting SCOTUS nominees that are other than philosophical clones of the late Justice Scolia.
- taxing the wealthiest and, for once, actually making tax cuts and providing other positive benefits to the middle class and working class.
- staying out of unnecessary wars.
- re-establishing consumer protection laws/regulations
They are such lying a-holes.
In my part of Alberta, I know more people who want to separate from Canada, than don’t. For some reason everyone thinks that since we have the oil in the ground, we should get all the benefits, screw the rest of the country.
If any of those people were living in a different province and saw Alberta take all the profits and not share with the rest of Canada, they’d scream bloody murder. But since they have the oil under their feet they think it’s literally theirs and no one deserves any benefits.
And they think socialism, fascism and communism are synonyms, all mean the government controls every aspect of your life and lazy people get ahead.
The words of brainwashed conservatives are a wonder to listen to.
Maybe Lois forgot my question but socialism by definition is an economic system, so her statement that democracy is inherently socialist is wrong.
The truth about socialism is that it only works in stable, homogeneous societies which aren’t that big, and America is definitely not that. In fact, America is becoming less like that every day.
The US has been and will continue to be a market based economy in general. Even should Bernie become POTUS, that will still be the case. We will be much more focused on policies and practices that promote the social good. But the main economic differences will be greater taxation of the extraordinarily wealthy, and the use of those funds to improve the safety net and basic social justice for those who are not wealthy.
Cries of socialism, communism, are just a means of an a priori discrediting of anything that could threaten the most profit being taken by the greediest and exploitative of profiteers and criminals.
And what we have right now is definitely not working as our POTUS does not even overtly admit that climate change is a problem.
Seems to me this is worth bringing to the top of this page.
TimB: "Cries of socialism, communism, are just a means of an a priori discrediting of anything that could threaten the most profit being taken by the greediest and exploitative of profiteers and criminals."