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Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:32 AM

What does "abolish profit" mean?

Serious question. I've read that the Democratic Socialists platform includes abolishing profit. Why would anyone be in business if they can't make a profit?

143 replies, 7391 views

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Reply What does "abolish profit" mean? (Original post)
MichMary Jul 2018 OP
leftstreet Jul 2018 #1
MichMary Jul 2018 #8
leftstreet Jul 2018 #11
Adrahil Jul 2018 #29
leftstreet Jul 2018 #71
pnwmom Jul 2018 #117
leftstreet Jul 2018 #119
pnwmom Jul 2018 #120
leftstreet Jul 2018 #121
DemocracyMouse Jul 2018 #129
mahatmakanejeeves Jul 2018 #108
Adrahil Jul 2018 #112
Blue_true Jul 2018 #31
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #110
Blue_true Jul 2018 #115
lark Jul 2018 #2
MichMary Jul 2018 #5
comradebillyboy Jul 2018 #9
lark Jul 2018 #12
comradebillyboy Jul 2018 #18
Oneironaut Jul 2018 #57
fallout87 Jul 2018 #131
sfwriter Jul 2018 #80
MichMary Jul 2018 #81
George II Jul 2018 #96
JackintheGreen Jul 2018 #36
lark Jul 2018 #142
JackintheGreen Jul 2018 #143
JCanete Jul 2018 #130
WhiskeyGrinder Jul 2018 #3
MichMary Jul 2018 #7
lamsmy Jul 2018 #88
GulfCoast66 Jul 2018 #99
lark Jul 2018 #15
MichMary Jul 2018 #19
mr_lebowski Jul 2018 #20
lark Jul 2018 #22
Blue_true Jul 2018 #47
scarytomcat Jul 2018 #33
MichMary Jul 2018 #41
kcr Jul 2018 #91
MichMary Jul 2018 #92
kcr Jul 2018 #95
MichMary Jul 2018 #105
kcr Jul 2018 #118
lark Jul 2018 #42
scarytomcat Jul 2018 #86
lark Jul 2018 #94
Blue_true Jul 2018 #40
handmade34 Jul 2018 #114
lark Jul 2018 #125
Adrahil Jul 2018 #32
Blue_true Jul 2018 #49
edhopper Jul 2018 #4
MichMary Jul 2018 #6
muriel_volestrangler Jul 2018 #51
Blue_true Jul 2018 #52
edhopper Jul 2018 #97
Yonnie3 Jul 2018 #10
MichMary Jul 2018 #13
ret5hd Jul 2018 #14
MichMary Jul 2018 #17
Yonnie3 Jul 2018 #21
american_ideals Jul 2018 #30
MichMary Jul 2018 #37
Yonnie3 Jul 2018 #46
Kingofalldems Jul 2018 #70
Yonnie3 Jul 2018 #38
Skidmore Jul 2018 #89
Yonnie3 Jul 2018 #90
Blue_true Jul 2018 #53
MichMary Jul 2018 #50
wellst0nev0ter Jul 2018 #100
GulfCoast66 Jul 2018 #102
Kingofalldems Jul 2018 #74
Loki Liesmith Jul 2018 #16
wellst0nev0ter Jul 2018 #101
Loki Liesmith Jul 2018 #106
Igel Jul 2018 #23
Yupster Jul 2018 #24
american_ideals Jul 2018 #28
Yupster Jul 2018 #43
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #72
Yupster Jul 2018 #98
yallerdawg Jul 2018 #104
Adrahil Jul 2018 #34
scarytomcat Jul 2018 #25
Blue_true Jul 2018 #55
scarytomcat Jul 2018 #87
Blue_true Jul 2018 #93
american_ideals Jul 2018 #26
Blue_true Jul 2018 #27
MineralMan Jul 2018 #35
MichMary Jul 2018 #39
MineralMan Jul 2018 #44
fescuerescue Jul 2018 #116
MineralMan Jul 2018 #48
Blue_true Jul 2018 #58
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #56
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #59
MineralMan Jul 2018 #60
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #63
MineralMan Jul 2018 #66
Lint Head Jul 2018 #45
Blue_true Jul 2018 #61
Lint Head Jul 2018 #84
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #54
Blue_true Jul 2018 #64
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #65
Blue_true Jul 2018 #67
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #62
discntnt_irny_srcsm Jul 2018 #68
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #69
discntnt_irny_srcsm Jul 2018 #77
grantcart Jul 2018 #73
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #76
grantcart Jul 2018 #78
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #82
grantcart Jul 2018 #113
muriel_volestrangler Jul 2018 #123
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #132
muriel_volestrangler Jul 2018 #135
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #136
muriel_volestrangler Jul 2018 #137
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #139
Kingofalldems Jul 2018 #83
northremembers Jul 2018 #109
grantcart Jul 2018 #111
GaYellowDawg Jul 2018 #75
grantcart Jul 2018 #79
comradebillyboy Jul 2018 #85
WhiteTara Jul 2018 #103
AlexSFCA Jul 2018 #107
ck4829 Jul 2018 #124
JHB Jul 2018 #122
Wwcd Jul 2018 #127
JHB Jul 2018 #128
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #133
JHB Jul 2018 #134
Lee-Lee Jul 2018 #138
Crutchez_CuiBono Jul 2018 #126
LanternWaste Jul 2018 #140
NCTraveler Jul 2018 #141

Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:35 AM

1. Have you asked a Democratic Socialist what it means? n/t

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #1)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:45 AM

8. I don't know any. n/t

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Response to MichMary (Reply #8)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:48 AM

11. If you have Google, you can look up their platform

According to the DSA’s current mission statement, the government should ensure that all citizens receive adequate food, housing, health care, child care, and education.


The only way for things like that to happen is when no one is profiting

www.dsausa.org

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #11)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:24 AM

29. So how does a business make money if there is not profit?

 

If I want to open a mom and pop shop in my local downtown, how do I do that, if I can make a profit?

How do do I build a operational cash fund to guard against economic down times? How do I invest in expansions, or deal with unexpected maintenance costs?

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Response to Adrahil (Reply #29)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:13 PM

71. "Mom and Pop" vs Pharmaceutical Corporation

If you're opening a convenience store or cafe, no one cares how much profit you make

If you're opening a drug company, housing units, clinic, utility company...

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #71)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 06:29 PM

117. Well, we need pharmaceutical companies. We can't get drugs from Mom and Pop operations.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #117)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:49 PM

119. They don't have to be privately owned

Fire departments, Medicare, Social Security, Law Enforcement, etc...

they all seem to do fine without being privately owned and controlled by CEOs and stock holders

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #119)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:53 PM

120. OR we could have government researchers ALSO developing drugs.

Or regulate the private companies more than we have been.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #120)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:54 PM

121. THAT would be a huge step forward

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #121)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 12:24 PM

129. I'm so sick of this socialism vs capitalism debate. Only a healthy, dynamic blend works.

Just as an individual is a dynamic blend of emotiins and needs, scale it up and you get the same dybamic blend. Build a good infrastructure of roads, public schools, net neutrality and regulations to prevent the formation of monopolies. A people's infrastructure to support a people's economy.

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Response to Adrahil (Reply #29)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:48 PM

108. Volume. NT

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Response to mahatmakanejeeves (Reply #108)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 04:38 PM

112. 0% on 100 items 0% on 10,000 items.

 

10,000 Times nothing is nothing.

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #11)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:25 AM

31. They conflate the roles of government and private business.

Government should never be for profit. But if a business can't generate a profit, why should it bother. The DSA position should be fair profit.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #31)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 04:05 PM

110. Their position is no business owners or profit

 

They believe that any business should be owned equally by all workers in it, unless the government owns it.

And all proceeds from it distributed equally between the workers.

They don’t believe in any person owning a business that others work in only for wages.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #110)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 05:01 PM

115. That is a ridiculous viewpoint.

What would be the incentive for taking risks? Also, the centralized system under communism worked horribly. Social Democracy is best, where capitalism is mixed with heightened social conscience, that system has proven to work fairly well and exists in a lot of Europe.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:37 AM

2. DAMN!!

Seriously, that is part of their platform? That is truly un-American. If you make no profit, how do you pay the workers or even yourself, how do you stay in business? This is C>R>A>Z>Y and a non-starter for most. My husband buys cars, fixes them up and sells them at a net profit but still at a lower cost that you could find anywhere else - so that's now wrong? WTF? You don't beat crazy and wrong by being crazy and wrong yourself.

If people knew this, Bernie and his ilk would be completely finished. Hope they rethink this substantially and realize how stupid and wrong it is.

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Response to lark (Reply #2)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:43 AM

5. I checked their Twitter feed

It's on there.


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Response to MichMary (Reply #5)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:47 AM

9. Looks like a winning platform...../s

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Response to comradebillyboy (Reply #9)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:49 AM

12. Really, are you making joke?

I truly hope so. Things are so weird these days, it's gotten hard for me to tell.

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Response to lark (Reply #12)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:57 AM

18. note the /s

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Response to MichMary (Reply #5)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:14 PM

57. Sounds reasonable!

Let’s abolish the police too, and fire departments.

My (sarcastic) conspiracy theory is that these people are really right wingers out to make Democrats look stupid.

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Response to Oneironaut (Reply #57)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 12:42 PM

131. I've been thinking this as well

 

Maybe these are plants to make is look bad and affect the midterms? Their policy positions will not work well in swing districts.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #5)


Response to sfwriter (Reply #80)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:31 PM

81. I don't think it means that

If it did it wouldn't be listed with "abolish borders."

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Response to MichMary (Reply #5)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:50 PM

96. I wonder why they pick up on the republican accusation that Democrats want "open borders"?

That's not going to do them or Democrats any good if that gets spread around.

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Response to lark (Reply #2)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:31 AM

36. It's not quite this simple

I cannot speak to the specific details of DSA's platform, but profit is what's left *after* you capitalize any income: pay yourself, pay your workers, pay your power/water/rent bills, resupply materials, invest in infrastructure improvements to increase or economize production, etc. Everything left is profit. This is the dividend that is divided among investors and, I assume, this is the leftover that DSA wants to eliminate.

As most DUers are aware, the top marginal tax rate for individuals after WWII was between 70-90%. The marginal rate is net taxable income after any deductions are removed from gross income. I am not a business tax guy and don't pretend to understand the ins and outs of corporate taxes, but an analogy I found useful to wrap my head around this was to think of the individual (or household) as the company/factory/etc. In REALLY simplistic terms, you have a sum of income coming in annually from your labor. Out of that you need to pay rent or mortgage, feed and clothe yourself and your family, pay somebody to carry your trash way, somebody else to bring you water and electricity (the power company), and all the other bits and bobs that make life livable. All of this would have not been taxed so that regular people can lead regular lives (or corporations, which like Soylent Green is people now). After all that is paid for, anything left would be the family profit subject to the marginal tax rate, and it often isn't a very big number.

Obviously, this is not how it works in the US anymore, and it hasn't since the 70s, certainly not since the 80s and St. Ronnie's Most Holy Grift. Socialist positions in general, but not necessarily the DSA specifically, don't want to deny income to live, or even a life with numerous creature comforts, but they want to minimize the gross profiteering enabled by the US tax code.

Put it another way: think Star Trek, especially Next Generation. Everybody has every comfort they could possibly want, to the point they can pursue their heart's desire without fear of not eating, or paying the bills, or affording medicine, etc. The mechanism is never defined, but "excess" money - that which is leftover after creature comforts are paid for, is folded back into the state treasury in order to enable to universal provision of those comforts.

That's the theory, anyway. Can any policy wonks chime in with corrections?

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Response to JackintheGreen (Reply #36)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 09:31 AM

142. I get your point, but still think attacking it from the profit end is not productive in an election.

Taxing the rich and rich corporations is what needs to be done, the average person has no to little concept of the ideas you shared above but do know that the country worked better when the rich and corporations were taxed at a higher rate. Of course the rich will lie and spin it as a tax on all and heavily promote that idea thru the showman in charge, russian bots, Faux Snooze, & rw radio. If we can overcome russian repugs vote stealing/hacking in the mid-terms, and flip both houses I still don't know if we could get enough votes to overcome the certain veto. I'm just not very optimistic in these dark times.

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Response to lark (Reply #142)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 09:36 AM

143. I actually agree

The profit motive is baked in to America's idea of itself -- the Horatio Alger myth and all that -- and so attacking profit comes off as downright un-American. We democrats have been much worse selling them since Reagan, when mid-century we were much better. Our ideas are better, and polls show most Americans support them in greater numbers, but sometimes we are for shite marketing them to the public.

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Response to lark (Reply #2)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 12:35 PM

130. well, no profit doesn't seem like a working system, or rather, it comes with all kinds of

 

complications that we would need a plan to address, but "truly unamerican?" The Constitution says
nothing about capitalism or profit. Theoretically you could have a perfectly American Government and set of ideals and have an entirely different economic model. It is the 3 branches of government, the democracy/republic, and a free press (not owned by massive corporations with selfish incentives) that is America. Now whether we would be the powerhouse we are today without our rapid economic growth...exploitation of the land, stealing of that land from Native Americans, etc. we wouldn't, so I guess if you want that to be the heart of what Makes America America, you would have a point.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:38 AM

3. To be their own boss, to bring a product or service to a wider market, to fill an otherwise unfilled

niche in their industry or geographic area, etc. Abolishing profit doesn't meant not getting paid, or even not getting paid a lot.

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Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #3)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:45 AM

7. Does that mean no more stock market? n/t

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Response to MichMary (Reply #7)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:03 PM

88. Really bad slogan

Socialism is not communism. Private enterprises are still free to trade and stock markets function exactly the same as in purely capitalist economies.

This slogan was a colossally bad choice of words. If you are scaring the denizens of DU, you have a big problem. "Tax the rich" is more accurate and way more appealing to the average American.

Every nation on earth has both capitalist and socialist policies in play - even North Korea. It's just a matter of degree. Northern European countries have a very high marginal tax rate with no loop holes. The rich pay around 60-70% in Scandinavia.

But there are still rich people. Corporations and family businesses still grow, children inherit the castles of their parents, and private jets are pretty common. Strong socialist policies do not mean not profits - not even close.

When discussing this point with conservatives, it's good to remember a few things:
1. Investing in social projects like education and healthcare is more fiscally sound policy than disinvesting and hoping the free market takes up the slack. For instance, IT companies in the US cannot survive without importing talent from overseas - you simply aren't producing enough STEM candidates. Every inner city kid who drops out of high school COSTS the tax payers. If the child had solid support in the early years and a decent education, he/she is much more likely to get a job and contribute to the tax base.
2. Entrepreneurship is alive and well in socialist countries. In fact there is a much greater chance of a poor person permanently moving up the economic chain in Europe or Canada, or Australia (etc.) than in the US. Knowing your kids will be educated, your health taken care of, and you will be housed if things get tough, makes it much easier to take the leap and start a business from scratch or switch careers mid-life.
3. The US is the worlds biggest beneficiary of free trade but it has also benefited enormously from the strong social policies of Europe and China. High government spending in those countries has been crucial to maintaing strong safe communities. Thanks to the Marshall Plan, the WTO, and other international mechanisms, Europe grew from a war ravaged continent into the biggest market for American goods. Strong social policies allowed West Germany to peacefully absorb an entire country and add those new citizens to the world economy.

Socialism is all around us. It is not necessarily good or evil. But implemented wisely it can do enormous good and be the best fiscally responsible option.


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Response to lamsmy (Reply #88)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:05 PM

99. But Northern European nations are not socialist.

In fact they are experts at using capitalism to generate tons of profit.

However, they are almost all strong social democrats. There is a huge difference. They make sure a enough of that profit takes care of everyone in society. But owners of the capital still make a good profit

I am continually amazed at ‘explainers’ on DU trying to tell me that people who identify as Socialist really aren’t. Socialism has a defined meaning...the state owning the means of production. When people who call themselves socialist push for no profit, I tend to believe them.

I am not disagreeing with your points which are accurate, maybe your definitions.

Americans are 50 years away from electing someone who self identifies as a socialist.

BTW. I call myself a social democrat.

Nice discussion.

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Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #3)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:55 AM

15. ?????

How does abolishing profits not mean not getting pay? Companies must pay the costs first, lights, rent, supplies, vendors - then what's left is profit and goes for paying salaries/wages. Even if you include the cost of pay in with the other fixed costs, abolishing profits across the board is still wrong. So flipping houses, fixing up cars, doing others' taxes etc. etc. would become illegal under these rules because they aren't a fixed amount and the pay varies on the profit. Really horrible idea.

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Response to lark (Reply #15)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:59 AM

19. I really don't understand this

DH is an accountant, so I've asked him to explain. Shareholders are rewarded with dividends for the risk they take with their investment. Dividends are from profit. No profit, no dividends. No dividends, no investers. No investers, no capitol. No capitol, no business. No business, no jobs.

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Response to lark (Reply #15)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:01 AM

20. Depends on whether they mean 'gross profit' or 'net profit' ... (nt)

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Response to mr_lebowski (Reply #20)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:07 AM

22. Partially, I agree.

With huge corporations, this is important. However, it leaves out the entrepreneur who only lives by selling the product of her/his efforts and that's why it is so wrong.

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Response to mr_lebowski (Reply #20)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:44 AM

47. Adequate gross profit can look obscene, whe in fact it is not.

Adequate gross profit depends upon the dynamics of the business. A gross profit that is obscene for Wall Street may not be very good for a company making steel bearings and having to make future inventory buys and investments the insure future production.

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Response to lark (Reply #15)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:27 AM

33. we have lots of non-profits doing really great things

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #33)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:38 AM

41. I have worked for non-profits

It really sucks to have to fundraise for your paycheck. Not to mention, never knowing if you'll still be around to do "really great things" if the funds dry up.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #41)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:25 PM

91. OMG. What, did you have to sell candy bars door to door or something like that?

How do non-profits manage to get anything done? The people I know who work at those and simply get their paychecks like anyone else just must be lucky I guess.

Huh. If only there was another way to provide services...

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Response to kcr (Reply #91)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:31 PM

92. My employment experience

with a non-profit involved having concerts (lots of work, lots of expense,) begging letters, stuff I can't remember.

Right now I'm on the board of directors of a no-kill animal shelter. We have received a couple of substantial inheritances in the last few years, so not a lot of problems right now, but there was a time when we were cutting staff, cutting staff hours, cutting pay for our Executive Director, trying new fundraisers. Yes, it sucked. Our director had to get a second job, which meant that she didn't have as much time to spend picking up the slack for being short-staffed. It was truly horrible, and we felt bad, but there wasn't much else that could be done. We were in trouble and doing what we could to keep going.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #92)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:45 PM

95. Yeah. Relying solely on donations to provide services is a pretty sucky way to do things.

But that's what we get when we cut government provided services. These non-profits are the substitution of a robust, fully functioning government. Convincing people that profit is the only motivation the world needs to make the world go round is how we get there. Then we get charities and non-profits to take up the slack because that doesn't work. Profit-driven organizations serve the shareholders and the bottom line. Everything else is secondary.

Our government and services should not be cut to the bone, sucked dry and handed over to the private sector in the name of greed. Profit has no place in our government. But people who are motivated by greed will claim this isn't true, and snow people into believing government is just like any other business. So, get used to more non-profits and charities forming to take up the slack.

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Response to kcr (Reply #95)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:19 PM

105. I can't imagine

the government fully funding animal shelters.

Most charities/non-profits step up to fill a "gap" they see in government services. The other non-profit I mentioned was a Christian charity that provided new cribs and car seats for families in need. to my knowledge, there isn't a governmental agency that does that.

I firmly believe that charity benefits both the giver and the givee. It made some of our church people aware of the needs that were right under their noses.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #105)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 07:32 PM

118. Local and state governments do so all the time.

Why do you think charities have to step in to fill in the gaps left by underfunded and absent services? The answer is their budgets are slashed if not eliminated completely, particularly when the GOP is in charge. Or they're farmed out to private contractors who underbid and scam taxpayers to pad their bottom line because their number one priority isn't providing services.

My posts have nothing to do with support of Ocasio. I'm not really a fan because of who she aligns with. I think it's shitty to primary a sitting Dem, especially now, even if you're in a safe seat. There was nothing wrong with Crowley. It was totally unnecessary as far as I'm concerned. But as far as I know, she hasn't called for banning all profits.

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #33)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:40 AM

42. No problem with real non-profits.

That's not what this is about. My concern is about a policy advocating preventing people from making $$ off the fruits of their labor or minds and thinking this is a good idea. I should be able to sell my Dream Pillows for more than the cost of the materials, i.e. profit. Otherwise, why would I make them other than as gifts?

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Response to lark (Reply #42)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:46 PM

86. I think the question becomes how much profit is right

Last edited Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:20 PM - Edit history (2)

if someone makes millions off the labor of others is that OK? And gives minimum wage for their work is that OK?
Charge as much as the market will bear no matter how little it costs to make? Why isn't a reasonable salary OK?

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #86)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:44 PM

94. This isn't about salaries, it's about profit.

People who work for themselves don't get salaries, they get paid from their profits. I agree something needs to be done to stop the corporo-fascists, but stopping all profits would hurt every entrepreneur there is and drive them out of business. If they don't sell the car they fixed for more than the cost of the purchase plus parts plus time, they can't pay themselves and so have to find other ways to live. This is probably aimed at the large companies like AT&T, Wal-Mart, BofA and their ilk but it would stop all private businesses in their tracks. They are using an atom bomb when a scapel is needed. Terrible, horrible policy and I sure hope I don't hear this during mid-terms or 2020 because if official, we lose.

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Response to lark (Reply #15)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:36 AM

40. Sane businesses shoot for a gross margin in the 65% range.

Generally gross margin is calculated after wages and depreciation. BUT, although 65% seems high, that must cover all taxes and fees, as well as investments for future operations and inventory. A business that is getting GM below 50% is borderline.

I agree with your synopsis. Your husband takes an inherent risk when he buys a fixer upper car, that risk is that there won't be something terrible and wrong that turns out to be costly to fix, plus, even when things go well, will someone be there to buy it, or can he auction it off for a profit. It looks at how much he spent on a car and his time and he sets a sale price that is hopefully for him, lower than competing car offers. Profit is the reward for taking a risk, anyone advocating taking that reward away is pushing a non starter concept.

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Response to lark (Reply #15)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 04:42 PM

114. pay, salary, wages, etc...

is NOT profit... it is a reasonable ideology to want to do away with profit... or tax profit at a very high rate...

this is not an unreasonable idea

a non-profit still pays wages, makes major investments, etc... we need to have common knowledge of these terms and concepts before we can discuss them intelligently

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Response to handmade34 (Reply #114)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 11:40 AM

125. You aren't thinking broadly enough.

I understand the impulse to reign in the profits of huge corps, but it's not the profits that are the biggest problem it's the huge outsized pay they give their top person(s) that's devoid of any linkage to how the company actually does. However, you are totally ignoring entrepreneurs. People who flip houses get paid in the profits they create, people who buy old cars, fix them up and sell them for a profit but still below market (like my husband) make profits, use those to purchase more old cars and to pay themselves. They live off those in lots of cases. Eliminating profits would drive many tiny businesses straight out of business, and is way too simplistic and would 100% not be supported by the majority. It truly isn't reasonable at all when you take the entire spectrum of businesses into account.

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Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #3)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:26 AM

32. You're missing a ton of stuff, though....

 

building an operational cash fund... building a capital investment fund to do things like remodels, equipment purchases, unexpected repairs, future product development, etc. Profit pays for all those thing.

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Response to Adrahil (Reply #32)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:55 AM

49. Bizam, Bingo. Some simply can't grasp that. I think that EVERYONE that hate the concept of profit,

should run a business where they are the banker of last resort. That really changes one's perspective.

You know my definition of a true progressive? A person who runs a business and deals with the daily issues there and still believes in paying higher taxes on higher income, a living wage for workers, investing in the community and protecting the environment. Anyone else has not been tested, so I don't really know where they will gravitate to with their backs against a wall.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:41 AM

4. you sure it wasn't

more specific, like abolish profit in Healthcare?

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Response to edhopper (Reply #4)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:44 AM

6. See the Tweet linked above

Obviously you can't get a lot of detail on a sign, but this does appear to be what their platform is.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #6)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:59 AM

51. That sign and text looks like "abolish profit from prisons"

See for instance, "Metro DC DSA supports an end to mass incarceration, prison reform and and end to for-profit prisons". They also, on that page, say healthcare shouldn't be for-profit ("Our current system of for-profit care is inefficient, expensive and ineffective. A national, single-payer healthcare system, sometimes called “Medicare for All,” would drastically cut and standardize costs while assuring that everyone is guaranteed access to healthcare", and that looking for short-term profits hurts the environment. But they are not calling for the end of all profits.

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Response to edhopper (Reply #4)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:00 PM

52. Exactly how does that work?

Profit allows an operation to deal with future expenses before more profit come in. Without that a business, even a hospital fails and closes. Now obscene profit? That is an entirely different matter and if the DSA goes after that, I am there with them.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #52)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:54 PM

97. i don't know,

maybe we can look at the nationalized non-profit health care systems of every other freaking advance country on earth.
That's how it works.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:47 AM

10. I was curious, so I looked at it.

here:https://www.dsausa.org/where_we_stand

Nowhere does it say "abolish profits." It appears to me they want profit not to be in control. I'm no expert about Democratic Socialists, nor am I an advocate for them. I have not read the whole platform.

"We are socialists because we reject an international economic order sustained by private profit, alienated labor, race and gender discrimination, environmental destruction, and brutality and violence in defense of the status quo."

"to promote international standards that put social justice before corporate profit."

"But today corporations no longer aspire to expand production and consumption by raising global living standards; rather, global capital engages in a race to increase profits by "downsizing" and lowering wages."

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Response to Yonnie3 (Reply #10)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:49 AM

13. But,

most people won't want to wade through all the words in an entire platform. The only thing most people are likely to see are the Tweets that very much say, "Abolish profit."

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Response to MichMary (Reply #13)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:55 AM

14. Including you, obviously.

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Response to ret5hd (Reply #14)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:55 AM

17. Well,

true.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #13)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:04 AM

21. You wrote that you read the platform said abolish profits.

I went and found out it didn't. I can't explain their inconsistencies, you would have to ask them.

The anti-war effort in the late 60s had a lot of these people around. They sounded like anarchists and were sort of saying burn it down. Angry and without a plan.

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Response to Yonnie3 (Reply #21)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:25 AM

30. The platform didn't say the words in the OP?

so why are we talking about it?

I'd like to talk about the actual political leaders and what they are saying right now in 2018.

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Response to american_ideals (Reply #30)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:31 AM

37. I made a stupid assumption

that what was on their Twitter feed and on their signs was actually part of the platform.

Hard to know what they actually believe, or want people to think they believe.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #37)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:44 AM

46. It is difficult.

I think you will also find these inconsistencies between individual party members.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #37)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:13 PM

70. So your OP is fake news it seems.

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Response to american_ideals (Reply #30)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:33 AM

38. Feel free to do so. nt

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Response to Yonnie3 (Reply #21)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:09 PM

89. Just noting that this is the day

that Kellyanne Conway and other talking heads have been blathering on about how Dems are going extreme left and are socialists now. That they want to take all that you own away from you. It's not true and we should not be played by the right at this time. I'm in no mood for such an argument. We need regulation reinstated to protect worker and consumer rights. Neither extreme of the scale is desirable IMHO.

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Response to Skidmore (Reply #89)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:21 PM

90. I couldn't agree more.

Fortunately I have missed (ignored) Ms. Alternative Facts and the other blathering fools today.

"regulation reinstated to protect worker and consumer rights" <- this is so important yet seems to get little notice.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #13)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:04 PM

53. The selection of phrases is important.

How many everyday people go to a website to read all of a platform? But everyday people HAVE been a victim of excessive profiteering. Why not use "regulate excessive profits" instead of "abolish profit" on signs?

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Response to Yonnie3 (Reply #10)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:55 AM

50. What does this mean?

we reject an international economic order sustained by private profit,

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Response to MichMary (Reply #50)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:06 PM

100. Or to put it another way

"We reject profiteering capitalists underpaying and stealing labor"

It's basically how communism became popular.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #50)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:11 PM

102. They are socialist?

The only do achieve that goal is state ownership of the means of production. Which is what Socialism means.

And it has never and will never work. Or win elections.

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Response to Yonnie3 (Reply #10)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:22 PM

74. Boom! Thanks, OP is made up.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 10:55 AM

16. It's a stupid unsellable slogan

A great way to alienate the electorate tho.

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Response to Loki Liesmith (Reply #16)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:07 PM

101. What if it's targeting for-profit prisons and the like?

Well, it's not actually on the platform, it's just a slogan some activists are saying.

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Response to wellst0nev0ter (Reply #101)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:21 PM

106. Sure

Activists need to be smarter about marketing.

There are about a dozen ways to say what they mean in a less clumsy way.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:14 AM

23. I'm a firm believer in source documents.


Anyway, I take it that at https://www.dsausa.org/where_we_stand you'll find what's been described as the DSA 'platform'. While not Democratic, there's still truth and falsehood about what the document says.

Notice that the really important, key words in the argument are all undefined. In fact, if you check carefully, you'll find that many of these words as used in one place can't possibly have the same meaning later on. We nod in agreement with both instances and fail to see that one precludes the other because of the sentence's surface form.

If we agree with it, it's obviously supporting us and means exactly what we knew it had to mean before we read it.

If we distrust the source, then obviously subversive readings formed in ill will are the only true meaning, as we suspected all along.

If the word meanings do keep changing, then it's hard to say much about the document except that it's to some extent ill-defined and is a work not of logic, fact, or thinking, but consisting mostly of rhetoric. Then discussing the truth or falsehood about what it says becomes difficult.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:20 AM

24. Maybe no one will be in business

Maybe the means of production will be run by the state for the benefit of the people.

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Response to Yupster (Reply #24)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:24 AM

28. Come on. DSA is center-left on a world scale

On a world scale:

DSA is center-left -- like the socialists in Italy or France.
US Democrats are center-right.
Communist Party (doesn't really exist in the USA) is left wing in France or Italy - Italy had a real communist party for a long time.

And US Republicans are far-right fascist authoritarians.

Don't smear part of the Democratic caucus with zero sourcing. Why the smear?

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Response to american_ideals (Reply #28)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:41 AM

43. I taught history in high school and college

That was years ago. I'm old now.

You say no profit to me and it isn't a mystery. It's classic Marxist theory.

The factories are owned by the government. Everyone works for the government for the benefit of the masses. Therefore there is no profit necessary or allowed.

Maybe the D-S's don't really mean that. Maybe they mean reasonable profit or smaller profit or higher taxes, but what they said is no profit, and no profit is no mystery, it's classic Marxism.

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Response to Yupster (Reply #43)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:13 PM

72. You almost have it right- the DSA holds one difference

 

Instead of all the factories owned by the government, they want them all owned by the workers. Each one with a completely equal vote in how it is run and each one getting a completely equal share of the proceeds from the activities of the factory.

Same for any other economic activities.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #72)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:56 PM

98. Can't think of anything

that could go wrong with that plan.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #72)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:18 PM

104. Profit is "surplus value appropriated from labor."

If it costs this and that to make a product and sell it, "profit" is just some imaginary thing which ultimately takes that product's affordability away from the worker.

Added all together, what the product now costs more than what it cost to make it.

A creation of a system of exploitation and oppression, devaluing humanity in the process.

The Marxist critique of the capitalist system, and why it will historically fail and lead to a more egalitarian system.

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Response to Yupster (Reply #24)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:27 AM

34. You gotta be kidding.....

 

.... worst idea ever.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:20 AM

25. they might run a business to earn a living (a pay check)

even if the business did not turn a profit after expenses, wages and materials costs are paid

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #25)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:11 PM

55. What about funding future inventory, unexpected expenses? nt

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #55)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:56 PM

87. bank loans personal capital

I'm not advocating no profit businesses just reasonableness
I don't think it is good to have billionaires that can buy our government and control everyone.
Our country did very very well until we lowered taxes on the wealthy and the corporations, this is killing the middle class. This caused the first great Republican depression and now will cause a second. They stole productivity, workers have not had a raise in standard of living in decades.

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Response to scarytomcat (Reply #87)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 02:41 PM

93. Are you a business person?

Talk about big corporations is something that is always thrown out as red meat. But the majority of Americans work for small businesses, sometimes 1 or 2 people businesses. You cavalierly throw out bank loans or personal capital, many small businesses don't get bank loans and personal capital means putting up things like a home (their only home). Some small businesses are doing well, but most can barely meet payroll on a weekly basis, that is a reality, your vision seems to not be.

Personally, I would advise ANY businessperson that has a successful growing business to find a way to share some of the profit with workers, those workers at that point are a key ingredient to the success.

If you don't own a business, I suggest that you try starting up and running one. The experience should be eye opening for you. And I hope because of that you DON'T become a suspicious conservative, but instead retain a liberal's view on economic possibilities.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:21 AM

26. Post a link to their platform if you think it's important?

I've heard a lot of things. But if they're inflammatory, like this, I don't post them without doing a little research.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:22 AM

27. Again, sloppy phrasing.

It should be regulate predatory profits. Most sane businesses shoot for a gross profit margin in the 60-70% range, mostly to deal with taxes and incidentals. Gross margin can never go beyond 100%, but margins of 80-99% indicates potential profiteering, although there could be legitimate justification for the 80% number.

The thing that drive me nuts about any fringe political idea is that they often cherry-pick reality and often make inflated promises that logically can't be met.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:28 AM

35. It's a simplistic slogan.

No doubt they mean "excessive profit." But, they don't say that.

For W-2 employees, it doesn't matter. If they work, they get paid. For me, who has not been a W-2 employee since 1974, profits are my income. I produce a product that I sell. That product is text content. That's what I've been doing since 1974. I work hard. If I don't get paid, which is the profit on the product I produce, I don't eat.

I don't make "excessive profits" though. In face, I barely manage to stay in the middle class income range, but profits are all I have.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #35)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:35 AM

39. As I posted above,

DH is an accountant, so I've asked him to explain. Shareholders are rewarded with dividends for the risk they take with their investment. Dividends are from profit. No profit, no dividends. No dividends, no investers. No investers, no capitol. No capitol, no business. No business, no jobs.


IOW, profits, or lack thereof, very much does matter to W-2 employees.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #39)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:42 AM

44. W-2 Workers Often Don't Think about Profits

That slogan is aimed at people who work at jobs, frankly. It's a "worker's party slogan." It was created as such. It's simple and easy to understand, but it's also simplistic and meaningless.

Profits create jobs. Without profitability, most businesses would not bother to exist. In a true socialist or communist economy, the government, which is the people, control the means of production. We do not have such an economy. Really, nobody does. Even China allows entrepreneurship and business ownership now. North Korea may have such an economic system, but it's working poorly, and the people there are starving.

I get the reason for simplistic slogans. However, they can backfire, too.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #44)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 05:57 PM

116. When I worked W2, I cared a great deal about profits

It impacted my income, my bonus and my ability to stay employed.

In fact, it did eventually impact my ability to stay employed when my employer wasn't profitable enough, I was cut loose.

Nowdays, I'm an independent consultant, but my memories of working my ass off to earn money for my employer stay with me.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #39)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:48 AM

48. To continue - Most of my work is for clients who own and operate

small to mid-sized businesses. For the past 12 years, I've been writing all of the content that goes on their websites and other marketing efforts. I work with a web designer/SEO expert. Most of those are S corporations. They are owned however, by individuals. The profits from their businesses are their income. They pay their workers, cover the costs of running their businesses, and the remaining money is their profit and their source of income.

In the United States, single-owner or family-owned businesses are far more numerous than shareholder-owned corporations. That means that profits are the source of income for each of those businesses. That makes such a slogan more than a little likely to cause concern for such people.

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Response to MichMary (Reply #39)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:18 PM

58. Most W2 employees only think about their pay checks.

As a business owner, a person will see a small few that see what an owner is dealing with, but those people are fairly rare. Even profit sharing won't motivate some employees, they are glad for the money, but they won't work any harder or smarter, or show up to work on time or take on needed, but tasks that they don't normally do.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #35)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:12 PM

56. No, they mean all profit. See my explanation below.

 

They believe all economic activities should be state owned or owned collectively by all workers, with no business owners making profits from the labor of others.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #56)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:26 PM

59. You have to understand Marx to understand the DSA and what they want

 

This is to expand on my above post and explain where they get their philosophy from. Much, not all but most, of their beliefs and philosophy is straight from the writings of Marx. You can see it in their Constitution, thei platform, etc. If you haven’t studied Marx you won’t recognize phrases like “alienated labor” and “popular control of resources and production”. But when you know Marx you know what they mean.

They don’t believe in private business above what one person can do (and very limited there). If you want to have a book store and 6 people work there they believe either it should be state owned or all 6 workers should be equal owners. They believe one person owning the book store making the profits is exploiting the other 5 people there only getting wages.

That is what they mean. Read their documents and pull the key phrases that you may be assigning your own meaning to and then go look them up from the perspective of who Marx used them and you will understand what they mean and what they DSA means when they say things.

Yes, they mean abolish any profit made if you employ any person in any economic activities where another person makes the profit from that labor.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #56)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:32 PM

60. Then they're ignoring American entrepreneurship altogether.

That's a huge mistake. I can't overstate that. It is a strategy designed to lose in this country.

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Response to MineralMan (Reply #60)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:35 PM

63. Agreed. But that's their vision

 

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #63)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:41 PM

66. Uff da! In that case, they're more irrelevant than I thought.

I just wrote the content for a website. A guy who had been working for an HVAC company started his own heating and air conditioning company, after learning that business as an employee. Now, he may or may not succeed in going out on his own, but that is his dream. He wants to own the business, not just work for someone else.

The United States is full of small businesses that started just that way. Most are sole proprietorships, whether they do business as an LLC or S corportation. If they succeed, they hire other workers, some of whom will eventually do the same thing and start their own.

Restaurants and many other businesses get their start that way. A person works for others until he or she feels capable of starting a business for him or herself.

That's a fundamental, core value in this country. If you're arguing for government ownership of the means of production, you're arguing against the entire history of this nation, which has always championed individual entrepreneurship.

It's a stupid idea to try to push. It will not win elections. It goes against too many people's dreams.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:43 AM

45. I can understand the reasoning behind it. Though the specifics of implementation

I'm not sure of. But I have thought of this often myself.
Here is an example. Say an individual, and entrepreneur, has made 10 billion dollars personally profiting from his business. He has maybe 2,000 employees and a business that is successful and makes a profit every year.
Question. Could a person not live well with 10 billion dollars? Why would they need another 1 billion dollar bump the next year?
I have worked for several corporations and have a basic understanding of how they gauge success and profitability. I know there are people on this forum who probably have a better insite and have worked in accounting. But there's one thing I know for sure. Corporations base their success on a percentage of increase in profit each quarter. And if that goal is not reached they consider that a loss.
I understand that there must be an adjustment to make sure that profitability keeps up with inflation. But I think the idea of a percentage of increase as the gauge as opposed to the actual flat dollar amount is majorly flawed.
The laws and regulations today favor not only the wealthy but the large corporations. Do you as an individual look at your money each quarter and say well I made it percentage more than I did last year, this last quarter, and then believe that that makes you profitable? That's a profitability based on percentage not on the actual dollar amount.
Another example is an idea of the flat tax rate. Here in the city of Nashville Tennessee property taxes are gauged based on the percentage of increase in the value of the property. Not the actual value of the property. Just the increase.
We have the issue now of people living in four million dollar homes in an area whose property values of increased 25% yet the property values of people living in poor neighborhoods have increased 75%. That has forced the poor to have to sell their homes or move because they can't afford to live in the rental property they have lived in for years That regulation is detrimental to the poor and profitable to the rich. If you're living in an area where homes are worth an average of 2 to 10 million dollars. The increase is almost always going to be less then say a home worth $75,000 increasing to $200,000. Which is happening here.
The taxes are gauge based on the profitability of the property.

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Response to Lint Head (Reply #45)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:32 PM

61. Any business person that is making a $10 billion profit, or even a $100 million profit,

and is not sharing some of that with enployees is being excessively greedy. With profits like that, future costs can be covered very easily and there should be lots of money left over.

I am ok with the concept of annual increases in profit, as long as workers benefit from that increase (i.e., larger bonuses).

The tax situation in Nashville seems screwed up and should be changed. The problem comes about likely due to sloppy administration, or rich people being more vocal and politically active than poorer people.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #61)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:34 PM

84. "rich people being more vocal and politically active than poorer people". Exactly. Most of the poor

don't even have cars and no buses because they may live in a more rural part of Davidson Co. Plus the billionaire realtors are making a killing, in more ways than one, by destroying historic buildings because they are the most profitable. They know the poor have no one to help them speak except volunteer organizations. While the rich have an "All Access Backstage Pass" to the road to extreme wealth.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:09 PM

54. Here is how a very active DSA type explained it to me. Basically abolishing private business owners

 

Real Democratic Socialists believe all means of production and distribution- so essentially all economic activities- must be owned either by the state or collectively by all workers in that activity.

It’s right there in the DSA Constitution calling for a rejection of private profit and for “popular control of resources and production”.

So what do they mean by it? Let’s take a restaurant for example. In today’s world if you start a restaurant you employ people, they work for you, you pay them wages. Any profit made by the business you keep.

Marx and the DSA would call the people you employed in your restaurant as “alienated labor”. They work at your direction and they don’t get an equal share of the fruits of their labor.

Under the DSA belief system if that restaurant is not publicly/state owned and run then all the workers in that restaurant should be equal owners of the enterprise. Decisions on the running should be made equally by all parties and all proceeds from running it should be distributed equally among all workers. All prices should be set not to maximize how much all the workers make, but at the level to provide them with the means to obtain what they need.

Then there are no private profits, no owner or manager making an unjust enrichment from the labor of the others.

This is what the DSA actually believes, and believes for all economic activity.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #54)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:37 PM

64. Silly concept. In worker owned businesses, why should an owner even bother?

The owner takes a rich and uses personal money to open the restaurant. The owner is responsible for all regulatory fees, rents, expenses. Yet the owner sits at a table at decision time and has no more input into how the business runs than a dishwasher? That's patently insane.

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Response to Blue_true (Reply #64)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:41 PM

65. In thier vision that's all done collectively

 

There is no “owner” who starts it.

In their vision after they get in power all existing resources are distributed to workers, and from that point in its run collectively.

And for something new starting they envision either the state financing it or other worker owned collective enterprises allocating a share of their proceeds to help new ones start.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #65)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:47 PM

67. Not workable. Where has true Marxism ever worked?

Europeans are predominantly Social Democrats, that system combines extensive capitalism (Owners) with taxation adequate to provide social services for everyone.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:33 PM

62. You have to understand Marx to understand what they want and mean

 

This is to expand on my above post and explain where they get their philosophy from. Much, not all but most, of their beliefs and philosophy is straight from the writings of Marx. You can see it in their Constitution, thei platform, etc. If you haven’t studied Marx you won’t recognize phrases like “alienated labor” and “popular control of resources and production”. But when you know Marx you know what they mean.

They don’t believe in private business above what one person can do (and very limited there). If you want to have a book store and 6 people work there they believe either it should be state owned or all 6 workers should be equal owners. They believe one person owning the book store making the profits is exploiting the other 5 people there only getting wages.

That is what they mean. Read their documents and pull the key phrases that you may be assigning your own meaning to and then go look them up from the perspective of who Marx used them and you will understand what they mean and what they DSA means when they say things.

Yes, they mean abolish any profit made if you employ any person in any economic activities where another person makes the profit from that labor.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #62)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 12:58 PM

68. So why did Marx write the manifesto? n/t

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Response to discntnt_irny_srcsm (Reply #68)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:11 PM

69. Why?

 

The Communist Leauge in Brussels was impressed with his abilities to articulate his theories on class, society and economics in a way they agreed with, so they commissioned Marx and Engels to create a manifesto to articulate their positions and philosophy.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #69)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:28 PM

77. So, he was paid to?

Such a capitalist motivation.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:16 PM

73. My guess is that it is supposed to be "abolish for profit prisons" and the last word got dropped

Not the sharpest tool in the shed

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Response to grantcart (Reply #73)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:23 PM

76. No, they mean profit

 

See my other posts in this threat for an explanation.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #76)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:28 PM

78. I didn't read your comments because they assert a definitive

Analysis of what they mean but no links to support it.

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Response to grantcart (Reply #78)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:33 PM

82. Here is one link for you:

 

I realize some here need everything spoon fed to them and even going to the website of the group under discussion and looking for themselves is too hard- and yet making a totally wrong assumption and post is ok.

https://www.dsausa.org/govt_run_everything

Today, corporate executives who answer only to themselves and a few wealthy stockholders make basic economic decisions affecting millions of people. Resources are used to make money for capitalists rather than to meet human needs. We believe that the workers and consumers who are affected by economic institutions should own and control them.

Social ownership could take many forms, such as worker-owned cooperatives or publicly owned enterprises managed by workers and consumer representatives. Democratic socialists favor as much decentralization as possible. While the large concentrations of capital in industries such as energy and steel may necessitate some form of state ownership, many consumer-goods industries might be best run as cooperatives.


You can note that link is direct to the DSA website. And answers to all you other questions can also be found there at that same link just by clicking on various links on that page- if that is not too much work for you.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #82)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 04:40 PM

113. Your patronizing "spoon fed to them" is noted.


If you are making declarative statements showed that you were sourcing from some source on the subject and the courteous thing to do is simply provide a link so that your conclusions can be checked against the source that you are using.

I don't have any other questions the subject really isn't that interesting.

Please note asking for a source is not "making a totally wrong assumption"

Life is too short to try and have a discussion with people who are want to use source material to make definitive statements, not refer to the link that they are using, and then take umbrage when asked for it.

Fortunately DU has an option which will make it possible for me not to have to encounter your posts in the future and inconvenience you by asking you to link to the site that you are quoting from.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #82)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 04:30 AM

123. That disproves your point

"market mechanisms are needed to determine the demand for many consumer goods"

Worker-owned cooperatives can make profits. Successful ones will, in a market. Their point is they want the people who work in a business to make the profits, not shareholders who don't take part.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #123)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 06:25 AM

132. It is in how they define profits

 

They define profits as “private profits”, those made off the labor of others.

They don’t see any proceeds made by a collectively owned business as profits, they see it as the workers get proceeds of their labor.

Since all proceeds are divided amongst workers, and labor is an expense, in their view there is no profit in such a system. Nobody is making money more than anyone else’s and the workers are only being compensated for their work, so that is not profit.

In their view if there is one restaurant that is collectively owned and after expenses there is $10,000 left that week and the 20 employees all get $500 then there is no profit, all money went to expenses including labor. But if 19 employees got $450 each and an owner got $1450 then that owner made a profit off the backs of the workers. That $1000 more the owner pocketed is profit in thier eyes.

Once again, you have to read and understand Marx to understand how they define terms and what they mean.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #132)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 07:19 AM

135. Is there anything to indicate the DSA define "profit" like that? (nt)

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #135)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 07:48 AM

136. Read Marx, it's where all their base economic beliefs originate

 

All their core beliefs come from Marx. The part about abolishing profits does, as does their beliefs about alienated labor.

https://www.marxists.org/glossary/terms/p/r.htm#profit

This isn’t exactly ground breaking stuff- it’s what pretty much all actual socialists believe. The very core of what socialism is revolves around the popular/social/collective/state ownership of all means of production and distribution and the associated resources. Without that you don’t have socialism.

Socialism, actual socialism as believed by actual socialists and not what some Americans seem to wrong define it as, and private ownership of business and private profits are inherently incompatible.

I would also encourage you to find a real DSA believer/activist and spend some time talking with them. It would be eye opening for many.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #136)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 07:56 AM

137. No, I think you are mistaken in thinking they all stopped thinking 150 years ago

The thing is, looking at the DSA's web pages seems to show they are not hard-line "no profit in any sector" ideologues. For instance, the page you linked to.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #137)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 08:16 AM

139. Of course they don't put the hard line stuff out there

 

They also don’t say anywhere that they accept prI ate profits up to a certain point, do they?

It’s pretty clear when they say in many place to abolish profit or abolish private profit. They don’t say “abolish profit over X amount” or “profit above X is bad”.

In fact their statements are pretty clear. They reject “private profit” without and qualifiers about limits or anything else. They are for social/collective ownership of all means of production and distribution, witkit qualifiers. Well if everything is owned collectively as they desire there can be no private profits.

You seem to want to make their beliefs into something milder than what they are, for some reason. There is a reason they are in a socialist party and not the Democratic Party, and is becuse their beliefs are different. As I said, start with understanding the very basis of what Socialism is- real socialism, the kind people who join a socialist party believe in, calls for all resources, means of production and means of distribution to be collectively owned in one form or another. And that means no private ownership, and without that there can be no private profits.

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Response to grantcart (Reply #78)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:33 PM

83. Interesting thread eh?

Very illuminating.

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Response to Kingofalldems (Reply #83)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:54 PM

109. Profit vs. Prosperity

 

We have to remember conservatives are experts at presenting small phrases out of context to drive wedges between voters. The platform is clear that in their goal for broad social mobility rather than benefits for a small portion of the economy, like what we have now. Profit is about benefiting the owner class. Prosperity is about owners and workers succeeding together. Prosperity is more sustainable and produces a stronger economy. Profit based economies consolidate wealth at the expense of the working class and drive debt.

There are a variety of ways to drive prosperity and the Democratic Socialists have listed some of them. There are many liberals who believe that business owners are a negative, and possibly unnecessary. I don't personally believe that, but we do need accountability for people and institutions that have power over other people.

We need to not be afraid of labels used against us. We need to own them. When we run from labels conservatives chase after us. We need to point out what we mean and be able to cite examples of how our polices produce positive results.

Profit is about a small portion of the population getting rich off of our hard work. Prosperity is about the workforce reaping the benefits of our work, and owners can benefit from their investments, too. Socialism is not the same as communism. Socialism is an essential part of democracy and includes public schools, police, fire departments, parks, and even national militaries. Even Adam Smith pointed out certain parts of the economy need to be publicly owned.

BTW I agree, this is a great thread.

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Response to Kingofalldems (Reply #83)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 04:25 PM

111. Not to be argumentative but I find these groups tedious and boring


I spent a hot afternoon listening to a very determined 20 year old spend 20 minutes explaining in great detail that since ICE was only instituted recently that it wouldn't change anything to simply abolish it.

It would be useful if someone told her that it was simply a reorganization with the INS making a split into visa processing (now called USCIS) and law enforcement (ICE).

Since the sub agencies of Customs, Border Patrol, and ICE are reflected in the larger agency Customs and Border Protection it is easy to see how people get confused.

This group is especially banal with its "no prison" slogan which is even more egregious than the "no profit" one.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:23 PM

75. Here's what it means for elections...

"Abolish profits" means "lose elections" in America.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:29 PM

79. They also want to "abolish prisons"

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 01:37 PM

85. Abolish profit means "We don't ever want to win an election, ever"

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:15 PM

103. that means you have a business in Arkansas

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 03:27 PM

107. the most antiamerican slogan I've heard yet

profit drives innovation and economy. It’s healthcare and education sectors should largerly be non-profit (doesn’t mean public).

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Response to AlexSFCA (Reply #107)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 07:11 AM

124. People drive innovation and the economy

Human beings are not profits, human beings matter more than profits. Period.

If thinking a human matters more than a dollar makes one anti-American, then I guess I might be anti-American.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sat Jul 7, 2018, 11:03 PM

122. Serious question of my own. Is this actually a concern?

If it's actually part of the platform, then it's the Democratic Socialist Party platform, not ours.



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Response to JHB (Reply #122)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 11:50 AM

127. It is not anywhere in the Democratic Platform

 

Think of Cuba.
Socialism & the concept being sold as to "abolish profit" is that limiting.

Its a fine sell when one points to the "millionare & billionare" profiteers that corrupt the laws in their greedy favor, but when considering how it affects those who are not of that wealth class of society, it becomes a point to be clear & cautious with.

You get to exist. That's pretty much it.



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Response to Wwcd (Reply #127)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 12:06 PM

128. I know that it's not part of the Democratic party platform...

...and that it's idiotic, both as a practical matter and in terms of public perception.

What I was asking was 1) is it actually part of the DSA platform, or is it just something these people have on a sign?

and

2) Are we particularly concerned with platform points or slogans of the DSA? By definition, it's made up of people who felt the need to be their own party, which is different from people who may have a democratic socialist philosophy but are part of a much broader-based party, namely the Democratic Party.

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Response to JHB (Reply #128)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 06:28 AM

133. Here is my concern- when DSA members and endorsed people run on our ticket it becomes our problem

 

Because by association it hurts our brand.

It’s no different than when a neo-Nazi gets the nomination for a race on the GOP ticket. If you read their actual platform you don’t find any advocacy of actual neo-Nazi stuff, but when you see a bro-Nazi on the ballot with an R by their name it allows us to say “see, that’s who they really are”.

Don’t think for a minute it doesn’t work the same way with their side against us.

It does, and it’s already happening.

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Response to Lee-Lee (Reply #133)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 07:11 AM

134. Well, what do you propose? Shut down every fringe party...

...that has any degree of overlap with us, lest they give us their cooties?

Ok, not shut them down because that can't be done, but just how much energy do you think we should spend denouncing them? And just how effective would that be, anyway?

After three decades of Republicans calling Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and a host of congressional Democrats "socialist", I don't see the point of overreacting to a fringe party that has 44K members nationwide.

They already call us socialists. They already have an entire infrastructure dedicated to seizing upon any excuse to bash Democrats, with complete disregard to facts.

I know it's already happening, because it's been already happening for decades.

Direct the energy at the real enemy.

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Response to JHB (Reply #134)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 07:58 AM

138. There is no good answer

 

Other than be aware of the risks and be ready to get ahead of the narrative with the swing voters if matters with.

Yeah, they always call us socialists. Just like we always call them racists.

But when someone is on the ticket that actually embraces that title, well that allows each side who does the name calling to scream “see, we were right!”.

I think what is different is how the parties react. Here in NC an out and out racist won the GOP primary for a State House race. Now it’s a very safe D district and any Republican stands zero chance of winning, but there will be an out an out racist on the ballot with an R by his name.

The reaction of the state GOP was a swift condemnation of him and a declaration that they do not endorse or support him and will provide him with zero resources because he doesn’t fit the values they want as a candidate. Now was it all really just damage control after seeing that they ignored a race and got an embarrassment who won? Sure. But they reacted in a way to distance themselves.

But when self-described socialists win Democratic primaries as a rule we embrace them, support them, and in some cases even call them the new face or future of the party. And in doing that we are accepting that such beliefs have a place in the party. And maybe that’s the right way to go, but we need to be able to articulate it and defend it if so.

And with so many Democrats who don’t even actually understand the basic concepts of what Socialism actually is and what the core beliefs of socialism are, we are unprepared to do that.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Sun Jul 8, 2018, 11:43 AM

126. I thought it was more...

putting some reasonable limits on corporate profits...like Elon Musk...a billion a year? Who can even use that much money? At some point wealth can't just be spiraled up. Wealth exists to make all of us better in a society that allows capitalists pretty much free reign. Afterall, it's our taxes we pay everyday on gas etc, that provides the framework and infrastructure that allows these obscene profits to be made...by increasingly fewer and fewer citizens. Just spitballing.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 09:05 AM

140. On DU, it often means avoidance of relevant research in order to pretend sincerity.

Doing one's own research often results in two consequences-- elucidation (which itself leads to consequence #2) and the pointed lack of any excuse to argue dogma.

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Response to MichMary (Original post)

Mon Jul 9, 2018, 09:06 AM

141. Can you show me where that is part of the overall platform of Democratic Socialists?

 

Might be in the general sense but not in reality. Sanders is a capitalist as are all other Democratic Socialists I've seen.

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