Saturday, January 25, 2003

It was a while ago that I get into a length debate on Sand in the Gears about a post Tony put up almost two weeks ago. It took me a long while cause I was short on time (I still am, but my own priorities are a bit fucked up as well right now), but I finally got some and here's what I posted. I've meaning to write something along these lines, of how FREE MARKETS aren't really all that free, but since I put all this time into this post, and it is sooooooo damn long I just thought I'd put the whole thing up. Can't wait for some commentary.

It took me a while but since this is still on the page and not in the archive here it is - although I doubt anyone is paying attention at this point now. I don't have the time to address everything but here goes nothing.....

Tony - As far as the political spectrum (or horseshoe) if fascist or racists are not at the other end of communism, then what is? I read this in a book recently, that showed the political spectrum with the commies on one side and fascists on the other (don't know the name of the book, I'll get it for you if you want it).

To be totally honest, despite my bleeding heart liberal tendencies and views and my contrarian viewpoint, my biggest fault with conservatives (and many of their viewpoints) are by and large is not, I repeat not, conservative idealogy. There are exceptions of course, but I digress, let's save it for another day. My biggest is problem is the execution and follow thru on those principles.

It may very well true Tony be that free markets are the answer to racism/fascism. Please note I don't really believe that, but I'll play along. My aggravation stems from all the things that go on in this country under the guise of "Free Markets".

Example - recently our beloved President was granted that whole fast-track-free-trade agreement thing in order to negotiate deals with other nations. One of the major Reps that was on the fence about it but eventually voted for it was a Republican from NC (his name escapes me).
I find it intriuging that when structuring these "FREE TRADE" deals, certain industries are given different treatment, leading me to believe it aint all that free. Some industries are more susceptable to the competition of FREE TRADE than others.

In one of these deals our new best friend Pakistan, the domestic textile industry got some protectionist trade policy when Bush negociated it. It should be noted that Pakistan is a big textile producer, probably their biggest export industry. I find it awfully convienent that a huge portion of the US porton of the textile industry is located in North Carolina, a state that also just so happens to have gone to Bush.

There are many more examples of this kinda stuff, and I guess this is to be expected in the heaping pile of bs that is politics, and I am aware that Dems pull this stuff off too. But my gripe is the dishonesty and hypocrisy; I think that when you look at a situation like this (and others like it), most of the ordinary people who vote GOP, the "regular folk" that Bush does so well with, don't necessarily want FREE MARKETS so much as they'd rather KEEP THEIR JOBS. And if those jobs come at the expense of other manufacturing jobs in states that voted against Bush, no GOP or conservative will spout some lecture on how FREE MARKETS need to be for everybody.

My problem is not the FREE MARKET argument, again it's just that it ain't really that free. I find it more than bothersome that this kinda thing is so rapant and that so many conservatives bash the lib'ruls on the free market issue but when it comes to having a "free market" that applies to everyone equally, the actual application or enforcement is pretty damn lax if not all together non existant. And funny thing is FREE MARKETS are generally not as free in GOP territory as it is in Democratic territory.

Free Markets is not, or wasn't until recently, part of the Democratic mantra, so I find it far less hypocritical. I think it's disingenuous, even an outright lie on the part of those GOPers & conservatives to keep talking about FREE MARKETS when the states that vote conservatively don't have to be exposed to open competition, but the states that vote Dem are told that they aren't up to the task to compete in a freer world marketplace.

One only need look at a recent news report on the growing number foreign owned manufacturers in the Auto Industry in Alabama, prime GOP country. In a Mercedes Benz factory, the employees in Alabama make about half as much as say their fellow auto workers assembling comparable cars, i.e. Cadillacs, in Michigan and elsewhere. There is no union in AL either, and we all know that those unions are such a pain in the ass for business always mucking things up. Nothing makes a GOPer happer than an opportunity to wag their finger saying that these auto manufacturers can't compete because of those darn unions!

You know, this might be true 'cept for one thing - Alabama gave Mercedes Benz a $250,000,000.00 tax break (that would be a quarter of a billion dollars) to move their new manufacturing facilities to the state! How's that for a free market!

I looked for the link but could not find it (hell maybe you can help me) I remeber about a year ago seeing a map in Time or Newsweek, that showed how much each state contributed in federal taxes and how much they got in return in spending per capita. States like Illinois, Michigan, New York and all those traditionally Democratic/Liberal/Union member states pay way more in Federal Taxes than what they get in return. Just to be fair, Texas contributes more than it gets back too. On the other hand it is the reverse for states like Alabama (and Arizona, Florida, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, among others--representing the political bedrock of the Republican Party). I guess this is to be expected considering a state like Arizona and Wyoming have huge national parks and small populations relative to the other aforementioned states, but the disparity is really out of hand, especially for a place like NC with the research triangle and all those other business that have moved down their into the Sun Belt.

Update - By the way, I searched the web high and low but couldn't find the map that was shown in either Time or Newsweek (I forget, please forgive me) but you can view the report put together by former Senator of New York Patrick Moynihan, or you can just find an old issue of The New Yorker, April 19, 1999, and look for the article entitled "Tea and Sympathy" by Malcom Gladwell. But do it later, this post gets better....

The case could be made that all those auto union laborers who make more because they are in the union and therefore pay more in federal taxes are in a way helping to foot the bill for Alabama to give subsides on the aforementioned jobs. This in turn hurts the union, themselves and could lead to job loss or put themselves out of business completely.

To bring this full circle I'm saying that I find this way of governance to be more Economic Darwinism rather an actual FREE MARKETS, and from what I know Fascism is roughly said the political philosophy of "to the winner goes the spoils." I'd say that applies here pretty well. You can call it what you want, but I say it's bullshit, not FREE MARKETS.

I trust you get my point. I can't respond to eveyone, cuz this is already too long but since Deoxy seems to find me where I mark my territory -

You're right, multi-culti sympathies, etc, did not give rise to terrorism, but they DID (and DO) SUUPORT and DEFEND them. Multi-cultis regularyl condemn the US for "crimes" that are so far down the ladder of evil that they are hard to even prove their existance while making no mention or outright defending the complete oppression of women (and gays and Christians and ....) and the targetted killing of civilians by Muslim groups. You want RACISM?!? See HAMAS, et al - "drive the Jews into the sea". THAT is racism - and intentional genocide if successful. US "racism" gets a lot more attention for a much lesser problem. - by Deoxy

Well Deoxy, I won't interfere with your right to hate Noam Chomsky and Susan Sontag, but I ask you... Support the terrorists? Those airline tickets that those terrorists bought so they could hijack the Boeings and use them to destroy the WTC, did Chomsky put those tickets on his credit card?

And all that training that Al Queada got, all those training camps they built in third world nations, did Susan Sontag give them money for those things?

Did Jello Biafra or Howard Zinn or Michael Moore give money to Al Quaeda or any of the other terrorist groups? I think not.

You can't say the same for our President and all his cohorts and cronies. They all have multiple business connections to the Middle East and especially Saudi Arabia. All of them have been overlooking the crazy crap that has been going on in the nations of the leaders they do business with.

I'll admit that I find it annoying that some of these groups seem to give greater priority to the problems we have here and Israel, as opposed to the repressive nations elsewhere with far more egreggious sins. But that doesn't undermine their work or their facts, it just shows that some of those people have their priorities a little wacked.

And the fact that you guys get so annoyed with the Chomskys and Sontags of the world and yet you don't say a damn thing when something like this or this or this happens, well it's hard for me not to think that your priorities are a little wacked too.

I have no time to touch on fuel density ratios and such. I'll have to save it for another time.

However I'm gonna post everything I just wrote here on my site (eventually anyway) and I just got commenting ability so you can tell me to go to hell in your own sweet way! It would mean a lot to me, and I can't even edit profanity (yet). Can't wait for my flaming response!!!!!


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