Anderz

Capitalism is getting obsolete

142 posts in this topic

Capitalims has been useful for the development of our human civilization. Competition is efficient and capitalism can even incorporate cooperation. Today however capitalism is starting to look more and more outdated. As information technology improves at an accelerating rate, using money as a means of social interaction is showing signs of the limitations of capitalism.

I think nonintrusive advertisement is fine. What has happened in reality is a lot of intrusive ads. For example a video on the internet interrupted and/or delayed by ads running before, within and after the video. What is the incentive here? Is it to produce and deliver a good video or is it to make money? More often than not these are opposite and conflicting interests and incentives making the result a Frankensteinish and schizophrenic mix.

And people posting on say Facebook for money, that's basically already a big no-no and is considered dirty. Imagine if people on this forum would earn money for successful and popular posts. Would that improve the quality of the forum? I doubt that. Instead I believe it would degrade the forum and introduce extra hassle for dealing with money.

In short, money is beginning  to become more of an obstacle; an obsolete middleman function in society. Of course in practice we will still need to use money in society for decades to come, but as Ray Kurzweil has shown, progress of information technology is exponential and even physical products will become information technology, he says. And price/performance is improving exponentially too so products and services will become dirt cheap which further reduces the need for capitalism.

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Another thing capitalism has done historically is to make people keep business secrets and fight each other in court and even outside the law. From a really big perspective, this has actually been a good thing! Why? Because it has forced people to come up with unique and creative solutions to compete with successful business secrets.

I argue that even this good aspect of capitalism is coming to an end. My current view is that our civilization has already reached the level of uniqueness needed and that capitalism even in this regard is getting obsolete.

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My friend capitalism is about mindset, not that much about system, system changes with time. 

I do not see any signs of capitalism going away, 

 

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@Claymoree I think it can be seen as content vs structure. The capitalist mindset is both structure and content. I think that the structure will change and taking the content away with it. When making money becomes irrelevant for survival we will see a radical change in how people think about capitalism.

 

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Capitalism has a huge momentum and society has large inertia. So I expect capitalism to remain strong for several decades, but exponential progress of information technology is as Ray Kurzweil said inexorable, so within a few decades from today much will have changed. Kurzweil said that there will be a both/and scenario with both open source and commercial products and services. That's a new layer of competition! I think that will be excellent and capitalism is then only getting obsolete as the dominant method for production.

An even bigger perspective is that evolution is all of reality progressing as a wholeness. Marianne Williamson said that "a tsunami of automation is coming to America". I think she learned that from Andrew Yang. And COVID-19 can be seen as a part of the overall evolution of reality instead of just a random event. And stimulus packages are a precursor to more widespread so-called helicopter money, such as universal basic income (UBI). Those are to me signs of capitalism starting to lose its dominance.

Capitalism has served a useful purpose. Capitalism has caused a trend towards mass markets. Bigger companies buy smaller companies in order to grow and to remove competition. And the majority of markets thereby becomes a question about how many consumers can be reached, how large your customer base is. Even this is something good seen from a big perspective. It has caused society to form a common platform of interests. It has acted a glue to make society as whole more cohesive. It would be confusing to have for example millions of different brands of automobiles. But even this useful aspect of capitalism is getting obsolete or at least reduced. We have reached a point in history where the mass markets are already established and mature. Without mass markets the production of goods and services would in the past have been much less efficient. Now automation and things like 3D printing are starting to reduce the need for mass markets.

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Another huge change I see on the horizon is the introduction of central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). China is already testing its new digital currency DCEP (e-yuan). Contrary to popular belief, money today is overwhelmingly created by commercial banks. What governments and central banks do has less influence than it usually is portrayed in media. With CBDCs governments will gain power over the control and creation of money. This means a massive lessening of the power of capitalism.

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El capitalismo, is taking some serious hits during that corona pandemic. 

And now there comes a mutation of corona, and maybe soon another one and another one.

I don't know, that begs for a more social system.

Edited by neutralempty

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@Anderz You don't seem to understand what Capitalism and money really are and how they work. You talk about them as though money, greed and shady business practices are inherent to capitalism.

They are not. You could have capitalism without money, but that would be a pretty dumb idea.

The problems you're describing are a result of greed and our culture, not necessarily capitalism. Capitalism in essence just means that the means of production can be controlled by private individuals and not just by the state. That's what it boils down to.

imho it's too way simplistic to just blame  structural problems on capitalism. It's waaaay more complex than that.

Also you're saying that information technology is making capitalism look "outdated" and then you talk about Facebook to illustrate the Problems with capitalism. This doesn't make any sense.


Just try not to be a dick. - Buddha

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@datamonster

The problem is that capitalism gives an easy access of power to greedy people and attracts them towards high responsibility positions, and politics and economy figures are not disconnected, so policies will be pushed that further greedy businesses more and hinder conscious development of the society the products are sold to.

Edited by neutralempty

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@neutralempty If you're concerned about the products being sold you should be an advocate of capitalism.

The free-market essentially gives consumers voting rights in what products are available, unlike in a communist system where the state controls what goods are produced and in what quantities, which states usually suck at.

This is what enables conscious development. You can be as greedy as you want but if people don't buy your shitty products your business is not gonna survive in a capitalist society.

Look at how much more conscious products have become from electric cars to vegan Burgers in the recent years as people are becoming more conscious and demand more conscious products.

Edited by datamonster

Just try not to be a dick. - Buddha

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@datamonster

Please pay attention to what I am saying. Your problems have pretty much been adressed in my previous response.

I am not concerned about the products being sold, from where did you get that?

The free markets voting rights are not my issue as well.

Capitalism's connectivity to politics gives domain to people that manage to overpower others in the free market. Marketing campaings and culture forming through politicians, doctors, teachers leads to a slower conscious development of society by taking unhealthy turns that favour profits of dominant companies.

Veganism's rise is pretty much a result of the free information distribution of the internet. 

It would have not been possible without the great recources internet offers to everyone. Otherwise we would still be stuck in thinking we need meat and all that stuff, being told so by bad medicine and greedy doctors. Getting sicker and sicker, poluting more and more. There is still no appropriate mentioning of the superiority of veganism in the mainstream media, despite the well researched, wide spread of vegan science.

Why do you think that is?

 

 

Edited by neutralempty

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5 minutes ago, neutralempty said:

Capitalism's connectivity to politics gives domain to people that manage to overpower others in the free market.

Well, capitalism is a political and economic system so ofc it is connected to politics by definition, just like socialism or any other system.

7 minutes ago, neutralempty said:

Marketing campaings and culture forming through politicians, doctors, teachers leads to a slower conscious development of society by taking unhealthy turns.

I agree, ofc politics, doctors, marketing  campaigns and teachers influence culture, but this is not a feature of capitalism.


Just try not to be a dick. - Buddha

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@datamonster

"I agree, ofc politics, doctors, marketing  campaigns and teachers influence culture, but this is not a feature of capitalism."

That was not my point :P. My point is, that the favoured winners of capitalism, of which a good chunk are very greedy people, have a strong influence over the cultural development of society, to favour more their sales. Psychiatry and the meat industry are the best examples imo, they don't only work through marketing, but even through education.

Edited by neutralempty

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5 minutes ago, neutralempty said:

My point is, that the favoured winners of capitalism, of which a good chunk are very greedy people, have a strong influence over the cultural development of society, to favour more their sales

Sure, but again it doesn't have to be this way. Don't think greed and skewed power in favor of assholes would be solved in socialism or a different system. These matters are solved by improving the system not by rejecting it.


Just try not to be a dick. - Buddha

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@datamonster

"These matters are solved by improving the system not by rejecting it."

That's what eventually is going to lead us to socialism.

It may seem like a far stretch for you now, but once we have reached egalitarianism, socialism will become a valid consideration in culture.

Edited by neutralempty

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Remember, capitalism is not just gonna go away. Whatever comes after it will build on top of it. The foundations of capitalism are too successful to ever completely go away. They will just evolve.

Modern society is far too dependent on giant corporations today to get rid of them. So you need to find ways to run giant corporations in more democratic and equitable ways. But you can't eliminate them.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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The challenge is to find a system that retains the good parts of capitalism, namely its marked success in generating wealth and fostering innovation, while transcending its limitations - its inability to deal with externalities such as Climate Change, and the distribution problem where its gains are shared so unequally that it begins to distort Democracy and threaten the stability of the whole system. Transcend, and include...

Social Democracy, Market Socialism, and a Resource Based Economy are all possible outgrowths of Capitalism that fix some of its associated problems, but whatever system ends up supplanting it will need to be adopted gradually, rather than being imposed in short order; social revolutions have a bad track record of actually making life better for people living under it.

I could see the United States transitioning to the beginnings of a Social Democracy over the course of my life, as it seems like the next logical step from where we're at right now, but anything beyond that is just speculation...

 


The problem is one of opposition between subjective and objective points of view. 

So either the objective conception of the world is incomplete, or the subjective involves illusions that should be rejected.  - Thomas Nagel

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The main issue with present day capitalism seems to be the emergence of younger generations who will never be able to attain a basic standard of secure living no matter how hard they work. Conversely, the billionaire class cannot help but rake in more billions no matter what they do. This takes us dangerously close to the monopoly of power held by aristocracies or communist governments of bygone centuries, all of which were ultimately failed societies.

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Many problems with capitalism could simply be fixed by passing a few rock solid laws.

  • No ownership of stock without being employed by the company
  • No corporate lobbying
  • No corporate political contributions
  • No buying of other big corporations by big corporations
  • Salary caps for executives and management
  • No arbitration clauses in contracts
  • No criminal liability protections for executives
  • No off-shore tax havens and corp tax loopholes
  • All employees get representation on corporate board
  • All employees get profit sharing
  • Higher taxes on successful wealthy corporations
  • Strict environmental regulations
  • Severe fines for corporate fraud or mismanagement

Simple laws like that, when rigorously enforced, would fix many problems.

These laws are not that difficult to make work. It's just almost impossible to pass them in Congress.


You are God. You are Love. You are Infinity. You are Leo.

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