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chadn737
March 24th, 2009, 06:42 AM
Does anyone have the weird feeling that suddenly Atlas Shrugged is becoming reality:

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/elections/2009/03/24/fed-treasury-chief-grilled-aig/

DevilPup John
March 24th, 2009, 08:46 AM
Never read it, but in sum I believe it says that the governments grab for power has pushed rich people off.

Honestly, nothing is new here, nothing Republicans themselves have not done in the past but in a different context.

Democrats are looking to control the economy, Republicans are looking to control moral/safety issue.

Democrats take away rights to protect the economy. Republicans take away right to protect us from terrorists, etc.

Nothing you have presented is new to me. The government in general is (and has been) making a grab for power. It is just a matter of what sector they are making grabs in.

There is little difference between Democrats and Republicans, both of them want to limit liberties/rights to "protect" you from something.

chadn737
March 24th, 2009, 09:27 AM
I'm sorry if you cannot see the significance of this. This push to control the economy and private industries is unprecedented in our history and cannot be compared to moral issues.

Tell me, on what moral issue has MORE control been asserted in comparison to anytime in our history? Abortion? It was once illegal for women to kill their babies, no longer and in this instance I think comparison to a power grab is downright ridiculous, as much as saying that making murder illegal is somehow a power grab rather then a necessary part of a civilized society.

So what then? Homosexuality.....it was once illegal to have sex with somebody of the same sex, no longer. Homosexual marriage? Once unthinkable, but now some states legalize it.

You're rhetorical dismissal of this blatant decline into State controlled (i.e. no longer free) economy sure sounds nice, but doesn't hold up to the facts.

DevilPup John
March 24th, 2009, 10:33 AM
I'm sorry if you cannot see the significance of this. This push to control the economy and private industries is unprecedented in our history and cannot be compared to moral issues.

Tell me, on what moral issue has MORE control been asserted in comparison to anytime in our history? Abortion? It was once illegal for women to kill their babies, no longer and in this instance I think comparison to a power grab is downright ridiculous, as much as saying that making murder illegal is somehow a power grab rather then a necessary part of a civilized society.

So what then? Homosexuality.....it was once illegal to have sex with somebody of the same sex, no longer. Homosexual marriage? Once unthinkable, but now some states legalize it.

You're rhetorical dismissal of this blatant decline into State controlled (i.e. no longer free) economy sure sounds nice, but doesn't hold up to the facts.


You have mistaken what I have said.

I have not dismissed it.

I would like you to quote me, and show me where I have dismissed this control.

I have upheld it as a matter of fact. It is simply nothing new to me. You put this up here like this is new, like this has not been happening for some time.

I simply argue that both democrats and republicans have made serious stabs at State control over all sorts of things.


The government in general is (and has been) making a grab for power. It is just a matter of what sector they are making grabs in.

There is little difference between Democrats and Republicans, both of them want to limit liberties/rights to "protect" you from something.

I have no idea where in my post you get the idea that I am dismissing democratic (party) stabs at more control...

But whatever you smoked in order to come to that conclusion... pass it on this way... there are some crazy ass leaps I would like to take myself.

chadn737
March 24th, 2009, 10:51 AM
Oh, I don't know, maybe it was the flippant way you treated this while trying to attack Republicans as equally as Democrats. Yeah, one could argue that Bush through the Patriot Act and other means, infringed upon our rights, but as previously stated, I disagree entirely with your analysis of moral issues and the seizure of power.

Who cares if Republicans did this at one point or Democrats did that at another, those issues distract from the primary point that we are NOW taking an unprecedented step towards a state-run economy, by arguably handing power over the entire financial sector to the State.

In an attempt to be Fair and Balanced, you have, even if inadvertently, watered-down the significance of the issue at hand. As such, I don't think I am too far-off in calling that a dismissal.

DevilPup John
March 24th, 2009, 12:38 PM
Oh, I don't know, maybe it was the flippant way you treated this while trying to attack Republicans as equally as Democrats. Yeah, one could argue that Bush through the Patriot Act and other means, infringed upon our rights, but as previously stated, I disagree entirely with your analysis of moral issues and the seizure of power.

You can disagree with whatever you like, I honestly do not care; I never had any intention of debating, I gave that up a while ago.

I was simply making the point: "yeah, the government is taking power... they have been for a long time... this is news to you?"


Who cares if Republicans did this at one point or Democrats did that at another, those issues distract from the primary point that we are NOW taking an unprecedented step towards a state-run economy, by arguably handing power over the entire financial sector to the State.

I was talking about the greater issue that governments in general, and historically, at some point in time take more control than they should.

I was not really trying to say "who cares" so much as "this should be pretty evident to you people." More of a "yes, and you did not know this?"


In an attempt to be Fair and Balanced, you have, even if inadvertently, watered-down the significance of the issue at hand. As such, I don't think I am too far-off in calling that a dismissal.

Oh believe me my friend, if there is anyone here who is strongly against too much government control, it is me. I understand what you are saying, and agree 100%, but I cannot help but feel you are picking on Democrats now that they are in office.

I could be wrong, I am nowhere near always right. But I just got the feeling that this was a side stab at the Democrats as well. The article also seems to be leaning that way, it seems to hide it well, but I think its leaning that way. In the same way liberals and Democrats did when President Bush was in office.

The problem is not that Democrats are taking power, the problem is that the federal government as a whole is taking power.

I think saying that "Democrats" are THE problem is totally asinine. The government as a whole is a problem.

People are just throwing pot shots at each other while the government takes more power. Sort of like when the rich whites got the poor blacks and whites to fight each other so that they could not band together and forward themselves (reconstruction era).

KingOfTheEast
March 24th, 2009, 05:51 PM
DevilPup, I understand your point, however the State's control over the financial and private sector is unprecedented. You have claimed that this is nothing new however, please point to anytime in recent history where such large government intervention has taken place and such drastic measures were taken to "save us from an economic crisis". I mean, even Bush later abandoned the free-market approach (that many Republicans held) later on in his last term, and that was at a time when the economy was derailing fairly quickly and uncontrollably. Let's not forget that the blame should be equally allocated to both Republicans and Democrats and not only to the Republican's who were running the White House considering the Democrats took control of the Congress in '06 at a time when the economy was steadily declining.

There's now unbelievable State control over the private sector whereas this wasn't always a normal occurrence as you suggest. We're quite used to State action that limits some freedom in order to accomplish a set task, however it hasn't been in this magnitude. Not only is it "Bye bye Land of the Free" but also "Bye bye Land of Capitalist Ideals". In no way am I suggesting that a laizzez-faire attitude should be extended, however neither am I suggesting that the State should be granted such large amounts of power over private enterprise all because of the economic crisis. And it's not simply privately owned and government sponsored enterprises such as Fannie and Freddie but rather the amount of power that the Treasury Secretary wants to be granted from the article in the OP that I suggest you should read.

Sigfried
March 24th, 2009, 08:39 PM
DevilPup, I understand your point, however the State's control over the financial and private sector is unprecedented. You have claimed that this is nothing new however, please point to anytime in recent history where such large government intervention has taken place and such drastic measures were taken to "save us from an economic crisis".

WWII

Rationing
State controled enterprises
Taxation at 50% GDP
Internment camps for American citizens.
Forced conscription.

You can say, "well, this is peace time and that was war." But officially we are at war now, or so we are told.

I'm not saying I support any of this, only that it is not the high point of the power of the US government over peoples lives and liberty.

cds69
March 24th, 2009, 09:32 PM
WWII

Rationing
State controled enterprises
Taxation at 50% GDP
Internment camps for American citizens.
Forced conscription.

You can say, "well, this is peace time and that was war." But officially we are at war now, or so we are told.

I'm not saying I support any of this, only that it is not the high point of the power of the US government over peoples lives and liberty.

Exactly what "enterprises" did the state seize and control? During the Korean conflict Truman attempted to seize the steel industry and was shot down by the SCOTUS based on the fact that it violates the Fifth Amendment...


No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

If the government attempts to take over a private company, I see a revisiting of the Fifth Amendment by SCOTUS. One begins to wonder if the court entertained the possibility of "private property" consisting of a private company rather than just real property when they made their Kelo v. City of New London decision.

DevilPup John
March 25th, 2009, 09:55 AM
Alright, Sigfried and CD gave me my starting point already:

Korea:

President Truman attempted to seize a steel industry when the workers threatened to strike. I believe it was Youngstown Sheet and Steel, or Tube. Something like that.

While President Truman was indeed shot down as CD pointed out, the fact is that the government made a stab at power over the economy. That is what I am referring to. This should not surprise anyone, which was really my point, none of this should surprise anyone.

The government has tried to seize power in the past, suspension of HC rights (Habeas Corpus) is serious one that comes to mind.

I should say I am making an inference, that perhaps is not obvious to someone who does not think like I do.

I had a feeling the government would be seizing more control when smoking was made illegal in privately owned businesses. The government telling privately owned establishments that its patrons cannot do a legal activity in THEIR establishment...?

Small things have lead me to this inference, and yes, it is a slippery slope argument, but I have never been a supporter of that fallacy.

On top of that, people are demanding the economy be fixed. They do not want big shot executives getting unreasonable bonuses, or banks giving out wacky loans, etc.

The peoples (US) demand that the economy be fixed does not make it unreasonable for one to infer that the government will take more power, for whatever reason; that reason could be to fix the economy, or some other motive.

But at least in my mind, that inference was not unreasonable, and to me, it was obvious.

The economy is on the down, a serious down. The people want a solution. Well the government needs to control an economy if it is to fix it. Now, whether or not the government should fix it is another debate. But people are expecting it to. It needs more "control" to do that.

The jump was not hard for me to make, and the road we were going was pretty easy for me to read in that sense. It may have been less obvious for some, but none of this comes as a surprise to me. Governments, throughout history, have always attempted to secure more power for whatever reasons. Romans, Germans, British, American. We cannot of course relate every single one of those flawlessly. But there are things in each that we can use to better understand the struggle between the government and people (or liberties).

Sigfried
March 25th, 2009, 12:26 PM
Exactly what "enterprises" did the state seize and control? During the Korean conflict Truman attempted to seize the steel industry and was shot down by the SCOTUS based on the fact that it violates the Fifth Amendment...


I did some research. While they didn't take ownership of industry in WW2 the US did form industry councils which directed private companies towards the types of production they desired for the war effort. Most companies were more than happy to play along since the contracts were fat and the state implemented wide ranging price controls on most consumer goods which made them less profitable. Not so much direct control as indirect control over domestic production.

From my reading the US's lighter hand on industry helped achieve greater productivity than most other nations where all war production was more tightly controlled by the state.

None the less the total outlay of government power during WWII was far and away greater than during this period of our history on both the social and economic fronts. They tried to pass a 100% tax on incomes over 250K (although it didn't pass).

I'd suggest doing some reading on the subject, it was very interesting.

cds69
March 25th, 2009, 12:45 PM
I did some research. While they didn't take ownership of industry in WW2 the US did form industry councils which directed private companies towards the types of production they desired for the war effort. Most companies were more than happy to play along since the contracts were fat and the state implemented wide ranging price controls on most consumer goods which made them less profitable. Not so much direct control as indirect control over domestic production.

From my reading the US's lighter hand on industry helped achieve greater productivity than most other nations where all war production was more tightly controlled by the state.

None the less the total outlay of government power during WWII was far and away greater than during this period of our history on both the social and economic fronts. They tried to pass a 100% tax on incomes over 250K (although it didn't pass).

I'd suggest doing some reading on the subject, it was very interesting.

As you noted yourself, the participation among these industries was completely voluntary. Interesting, but not really relevant to the topic at hand. Government asking private industry to have input is definitely not unconstitutional. Seizing private firms that are not banks is highly questionable.

PerVirtuous
March 25th, 2009, 08:15 PM
I'm sorry if you cannot see the significance of this. This push to control the economy and private industries is unprecedented in our history and cannot be compared to moral issues.

It is not unprecedented at all. Teddy Roosevelt, a Republican, kicked the greedy business community in the ass a long time ago. They got all pissy with him, too. A lot of what he did was to prevent situations like we have today.


Tell me, on what moral issue has MORE control been asserted in comparison to anytime in our history? Abortion? It was once illegal for women to kill their babies, no longer and in this instance I think comparison to a power grab is downright ridiculous, as much as saying that making murder illegal is somehow a power grab rather then a necessary part of a civilized society.

As if the people who speak about this actually care. They use the issue to get elected.


So what then? Homosexuality.....it was once illegal to have sex with somebody of the same sex, no longer. Homosexual marriage? Once unthinkable, but now some states legalize it.

So what? The average age for a woman to get married was 12 a hundred or so years ago. Change is not bad. At the time conservatives said it was inviting the devil to let them go any longer without being married. People are so gullible.


You're rhetorical dismissal of this blatant decline into State controlled (i.e. no longer free) economy sure sounds nice, but doesn't hold up to the facts.

This is a crock. We currently live in an oligarchy. I would love to see the government seize the power from them. At least the government officials were elected. I can't vote out the scumbags on wall street who screwed up our economy by using tricks and cheats to steal this nations pension money. You are oversimplifying and misrepresenting.