Friday, June 6, 2008

A Not-so Anti-Capitalist Rant

I have not read Marx or Becker. Nevertheless, I find that I have been repeating this phrase to many people: “Capitalism is the root of all evil”. I vaguely remember Marx saying that but being the half-past six that I am, I cannot remember. I was trying to explain to my boyfriend (who probably wish I would just shut the hell up) the possibility of an overhaul of our moral systems if there was no such thing as private ownership. Robbery would not be wrong or rather the act of robbery probably does not exist because we do not own anything, so technically speaking; they are not taking away anything. Hold that thought and jump to the reactions.

My boyfriend wrinkles his nose and frowns very deeply at me and looks at me with a sickened expression as though I said something like ‘I am in love with my brother’, L proclaimed that it would be a chaotic and order-less world and WYang thought about it for awhile and said, interesting.

Speaking of order, well, it would be true that probably it would be chaotic because essentially capitalism keeps order in the oppression form. (Again, my own two unpolished cents worth) Social contracts which are probably the foundation of democracy (correct me if I am wrong) are based in capitalistic thought and thereby democracy has ‘oppression-istic’ roots which are no much more different from a monarchy or any other forms of governance. Maybe it is an unfair statement but I would, in my very opinionated view think that the oppression in democracy is very much hidden and not so blatantly displayed in visible forms like the others.

Communism (according to me) does not work in our world because we live in a capitalistic world. Of course it has its shortcoming like all other systems. I mean, sure, acknowledge all the benefits of democracy, democracy probably being the best of the worst systems or whatever, but we are able to say that because we experience the benefits of capitalism. The ability to type on my laptop or sit in a coffee joint debating, those are advantages of us being on the favourable side of the inequality that capitalism. To even speak about inequality or theorize capitalistic devils, we have to be on that side--the ‘upside’ of the see- saw of inequality.

Disclaimer: This is a “coffee-shop talk” argument. Pardon my lack of depth and any other wrong concepts I have. Would be grateful for corrections or guidance.

Well, I am probably not going to stop going to Starbucks or not lust after the pairs of Christian Louboutins and that just makes me feel like a bad, guilty person after being so oh-communism-sucks.BLAH.

5 comments:

Janet Yang said...

thanks amy for today. i had fun! it felt like my own bday. :) :) :) i hope you enjoyed yourself today too!! :D

chocolatecup said...

lol. do you even read this blog of mine. anyway, i had fun too! too bad i had to go off early:( i was like so zonked out yesterday. LOL

property law said...

"I was trying to explain to my boyfriend (who probably wish I would just shut the hell up) the possibility of an overhaul of our moral systems if there was no such thing as private ownership. Robbery would not be wrong or rather the act of robbery probably does not exist because we do not own anything, so technically speaking; they are not taking away anything."

Ownership is just a concept, a theory. Academics are undecided on the exact function of that theory and as such, the law in society never uses the concept of ownership to judge a conversion of goods or the like (eg. Robbery). Even if private ownership did not exist, robbery will still be wrong as the law uses the concept of possession to decide whether or not we own the chattel. If you have possession of the goods, then you are assumed to be the owner of the goods. Unless someone with a better title of the goods come along (Eg. Owner [better title] vs Thief). If I have something in my possession and you steal it from me, you are still guilty of robbery even though I might have stolen the chattel from someone else.

With communism, possession does not cease. Private ownership might have, but definitely not the act of possessing goods. Hence, robberies and conversions are still possiblities.

It's good to know some background on these legal concepts before jumping into conclusions. You will sound more credible.

chocolatecup said...

WELL.

First of all i am not saying that 'robbery' would not happen with the whole abolishment of the concept. I am talking about how the act of 'robbery' is conceived to be bad/negative because of the existence of the concept of ownership.There would be no 'robbery' to speak of if there is no 'mine'.IF the world was not demarcated into the haves or the have-nots, even if I were to 'steal' your wallet, you would not think i am 'stealing' it IF there was the existence of money in that world at all. The idea here is the term 'OURS'.

Your example grounded in property law is very good in explaining why the problem i.e robbery but like i mentioned before if there were no 'property', there would be no 'robbery' to speak of.

Consider this: WHO are the people that need property laws? The ones who HAVE something i.e money. They would be the ones who want to protect that something that they have. Thus, think about who drafts the law regarding all these issues or any other issues-definitely not the HAVE-NOTS.

Of course i do admit that the abolishment of this concept is very unrealistic and probably never going to happen.

Communism in my opinion is in no way a regime a true reflection or example of a 'private-ownershipless' world. Or maybe i should really be talking about not just private ownership but just the concept of OWNERSHIP.

The law although believed to be just may not be at all just. For example,the judge is the one which gives a final verdict on cases. A judge is human and thus unable to get away from his/her own prejudices. Just look at the justice system in a certain country for example and the rulings on the opposition parties e.g C and J and tell me how JUST do you think law is? (sorry had to put those in abstract because i may be persecuted)

"The hierachy of credibility states that in any system of ranked groups,participants take it as a given that memebers of the highest group have the right to define the way things are because it is believed that those at the top have access to a more complete picture of what is going on than anyone else. Members of lower groups will have incomplete information, and their view of reality will be partial and distorted in consequence."(Becker 1967,p. 241).

You probably believe that the law deserves to be the most credible account/source since they are afterall drafted by people on top but as Sumner (1950) pointed out "matters of ranked status are contained in the mores" and thus Becker (1967) states that"this belief has a moral quality" in which " credibility and the right to be heard are differenetially distributed hrough the ranks of the system".(Becker 1967)You can read more about the hierachy of credibility in Becker's book. Therefore of course, the law is more credible compared to me who has no pretty titles to my name.

Note to the point of credibility, i have mentioned many times in my many posts that this so called 'arguments' of mine are 'coffee-shop' arguments. If i wanted to write a full fledge argument on anything i WOULD have to do alot more research than RANTING and probably would have written a PAPER on something instead of blogging.

Anyhow, thanks for your insights, I am pretty happy that someone actually is willing to debate with me on my point because i do not think that they are 'oh-so-perfect':) So thank you whoever you are 'property law'.

chocolatecup said...

shoots. just a few grammatical errors:
(1) "IF there was the existence of money in that world at all"--> IF there IS the existence of money in that world at all

(2)"if there were no 'property', there would be no 'robbery' to speak of"--> if there WAS no 'property', there would be no 'robbery' to speak of