Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

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Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Jakob » Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:45 pm

How do you perceive the economic model?
Last edited by Jakob on Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby iambiguous » Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:47 pm

Next up: Which ought he to be?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Jakob » Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:48 pm

He? Is ILP male?
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby iambiguous » Thu Feb 28, 2019 5:52 pm

Jakob wrote:He? Is ILP male?


Uh, oops? :wink:

Next up: Which ought it to be?
He was like a man who wanted to change all; and could not; so burned with his impotence; and had only me, an infinitely small microcosm to convert or detest. John Fowles

Start here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=176529
Then here: viewtopic.php?f=15&t=185296
And here: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=194382
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby promethean75 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:19 pm

soundcloud

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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:51 pm

Capitalism is the antithesis of the love of anything remotely resembling wisdom.

Republicans are brain damaged https://journals.plos.org/plosone/artic ... ne.0052970

Conservatism correlates inversely with education and intelligence viewtopic.php?f=3&t=194612
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Carleas » Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:26 pm

ILP is more like an oil-rich state with a benevolent god-king. It has a natural resource in the form of my day job, which is sufficient to provide for the needs of its citizens, but also means that all decision-making is ultimately subject to my whim. Enlightened leader that I am, I generally choose not to exercise my locally infinite power.

It would be more capitalist if it had any wealth-like feathers, e.g. a karma system or upvoting, and if greater site wealth meant greater site power. It would be more socialist if it had a flat-rate fee to participate (and maybe provided our lesser lights with editing help). It would be more of either if the costs were supported by e.g. ad revenue, such that it depended on attracting new (and/or wealthier) participants.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Jakob » Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:43 pm

Haha, yes yes, decent answer.
I guess god-king it is then.
I would appreciate it personally if that would become your title.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Carleas » Wed Mar 06, 2019 5:55 pm

Jakob wrote:I would appreciate it personally if that would become your title.

It basically is, have you read Hesse's The Glass Bead Game?
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Wed Mar 06, 2019 6:01 pm

Carleas wrote:ILP is more like an oil-rich state with a benevolent god-king. It has a natural resource in the form of my day job, which is sufficient to provide for the needs of its citizens, but also means that all decision-making is ultimately subject to my whim. Enlightened leader that I am, I generally choose not to exercise my locally infinite power.

The Kingdom of ILP benevolently overseen by the House of Carleas :D

It would be more capitalist if it had any wealth-like feathers, e.g. a karma system or upvoting, and if greater site wealth meant greater site power. It would be more socialist if it had a flat-rate fee to participate (and maybe provided our lesser lights with editing help). It would be more of either if the costs were supported by e.g. ad revenue, such that it depended on attracting new (and/or wealthier) participants.

Wouldn't be more capitalistic if you found a way to capitalize on it (ie ads, fees)? As it stands, it's more of a social service offering a wealth of wisdom for free, at your expense. The costs should be a charitable contribution for tax purposes ;)
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Carleas » Wed Mar 06, 2019 6:51 pm

I guess there's two ways to interpret the question. One is the economics of ILP in the context of the broader economy, in which case it's like a privately maintained park, which is like a throwback to old patronage systems and not really either capitalist or socialist.

The other question, which is the one I answered, is the social order ILP from within ILP, i.e. who are the citizens, what's the government look like, what are the resources and who controls access. I think it's similar to Singapore, with a dictator that owns everything but is mostly hands-off, other than weird interventions like prohibiting chewing gum.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Wed Mar 06, 2019 7:34 pm

Carleas wrote:I guess there's two ways to interpret the question.

It just keeps getting more and more complicated lol

The other question, which is the one I answered, is the social order ILP from within ILP, i.e. who are the citizens, what's the government look like, what are the resources and who controls access.

How do fees and ads fit into that? It seems like you answered one question one way and the other another way:

It would be more capitalist if it had any wealth-like feathers, e.g. a karma system or upvoting, and if greater site wealth meant greater site power.

It would be more socialist if it had a flat-rate fee to participate (and maybe provided our lesser lights with editing help).

It would be more of either if the costs were supported by e.g. ad revenue, such that it depended on attracting new (and/or wealthier) participants.


Btw I'm glad there is no karma or voting: appeal to popularity.

So if there is no way to gain site-wealth, then everyone is perpetually equal, therefore it's socialism. Right? My opinion will never be worth more than anyone else's opinion. There is no way for me to consolidate site-wealth.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Silhouette » Wed Mar 06, 2019 7:59 pm

Oh god-king, please accept my humble contribution:

Carleas wrote:It would be more capitalist if it had any wealth-like feathers, e.g. a karma system or upvoting, and if greater site wealth meant greater site power.

A karma system or upvoting would establish a kind of currency, yes, but Capitalism requires the ability not only to spend such a currency, but also to invest it into some kind of private ownership - perhaps allowing members to spend their currency on owning sub-forums to run as they please, or at least within your divine monarchist law. Competition would then theoretically ensue, and the rubbish rulers would go out of business and have to sell their forum to someone more worthy.

At the moment, there appear to be something like feudal lords ultimately under your rule, but offering military services (albeit more in the form of an internal policing system) as the serfs work the fields i.e. post (the majority of) threads and replies.

What I find interesting is that the Marxist "Historical Materialism" correlates with population size, indicating that this forum is bigger than one run in a Tribalistic way, but not so big as to become unmanagable even by moderators - which would then require something like the above described "capitalist-like" system for further decentralisation.

Carleas wrote:It would be more socialist if it had a flat-rate fee to participate (and maybe provided our lesser lights with editing help).

Sticking within the interpretation of the question as applying to the forum's internal structure (rather than in terms of its outside funding to exist at all) Socialism would only happen if the size of the forum became so unwieldy even for the Capitalist model to work effectively enough, that members would overthrow the capitalist ownership of the sub-forums, until it became communally established between members how to run and govern each sub-forum in a Communist model.

It would be an interesting social experiment to see what would happen to a forum of such size that it would come to this, and to see if somewhere along the way - some authoritarian leader turned up to lead this revolution and subsequently attempted to re-take the Carleas god-king role over a forum population much larger than can be centrally managed - causing it to all fall apart, as history is supposed to indicate "necessarily" happens...
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Carleas » Wed Mar 06, 2019 9:56 pm

Serendipper wrote:How do fees and ads fit into that?

Fees/ads change things orthogonally to capitalist/socialist, but would move the site towards a policy area where that question is more meaningful. I'd say it's not socialist because citizens lack ownership, both private and public. Fees, for example, would give citizens a kind of ownership. Ads, by contrast, would effectively monetize contributions rather than citizens, so that citizens would have power over the state in the form of bargaining power (i.e. "I'll keep adding $$ content if you make change xyz").

As it stands, there's no requirement for value generation tied to the health of the site (at least in terms of the provision of necessary services, i.e. hosting etc.). That disconnect takes us out of the socialist/capitalist question.

I would think you'd want to exclude oil-rich states from socialism, since the outcomes there are generally pretty shitty, even though they technically meet a lot of the criteria for being socialist.

Serendipper wrote:Btw I'm glad there is no karma or voting: appeal to popularity.

We're not ever likely to have a system like this because it's a well-above-zero lift to implement, but conceptually I go back and forth on its utility. It can definitely be overdone and lead to bad outcomes, particularly on a site that tries to accommodate controversial worldviews. But some minimal version could improve things, especially by catching and demoting the overlooked dreck, and also by calling attention to particularly solid contributions.

Arguably there is a super minimal karma system: new user permissions are restricted for their first few posts, and non-custom ranks are tied to post counts. It's minimal enough that no one thinks of this as a karma system, but it's basically treating post count as karma.

Silhouette wrote:A karma system or upvoting would establish a kind of currency, yes, but Capitalism requires the ability not only to spend such a currency, but also to invest it into some kind of private ownership - perhaps allowing members to spend their currency on owning sub-forums to run as they please, or at least within your divine monarchist law. Competition would then theoretically ensue, and the rubbish rulers would go out of business and have to sell their forum to someone more worthy.

I basically agree, although the analogy begins to breakdown as we get more literal. To have a true economy, we'd need some kind of currency which could both be earned by actions taken on the site, and spent on features. So, for example, users might get a certain amount of karma upon joining, spend karma both to post and to read others' posts, and receive some part of the karma that others spend to read their posts. Karma could be spend to found new forums or to promote posts or the like.

This is actually a fascinating thought experiment and it would be interesting to observe, but I don't know that it would produce the best philosophy (as opposed to e.g. lots of threads full of porn and salacious rumors about our dear god-king).

Silhouette wrote:At the moment, there appear to be something like feudal lords ultimately under your rule, but offering military services (albeit more in the form of an internal policing system) as the serfs work the fields i.e. post (the majority of) threads and replies.

Yes, we do have an unelected nobility with significant power and near-absolute control over their fiefdom. But I'm not sure that the users are serfs. The value proposition that ILP offers to users is the opportunity posts in a place where other users will see them. That would be something like a serf working a field in exchange for the opportunity to work the field beside her friends.

Silhouette wrote:What I find interesting is that the Marxist "Historical Materialism" correlates with population size, indicating that this forum is bigger than one run in a Tribalistic way, but not so big as to become unmanagable even by moderators - which would then require something like the above described "capitalist-like" system for further decentralisation.

I think we actually got to the point where things became unmanageable by moderators, and we need either a greater resource expenditure or a decentralized system. Instead, we failed to deliver either, people got frustrated and left, and we shrank back down to a size that could be managed by moderators.

Which is to say that the causal connection might go the other way: if we implemented the capitalist-like (or, more accurately, market-like) system, we would probably see more growth.

Silhouette wrote:It would be an interesting social experiment to see what would happen to a forum of such size that it would come to this, and to see if somewhere along the way - some authoritarian leader turned up to lead this revolution and subsequently attempted to re-take the Carleas god-king role over a forum population much larger than can be centrally managed - causing it to all fall apart, as history is supposed to indicate "necessarily" happens...

There are some parallels in what you're saying to what has happened with Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter over the past few years. Those platforms grew very rapidly, and experienced problems with moderation, leading to crackdowns followed by large-scale defections and the creation of new independent 'states'. Reddit and Twitter seem to have weathered the storm better, at least in terms of quality of discussion. Facebook used more communist-like central planning in the form of algorithmic moderation, and Reddit used more capitalist-like decentralization in the form of subreddits and karma. Twitter's approach has some lighter moderation plus organic controls of liking/retweeting/unfollowing/muting/blocking. The platforms have other differences, but it does appear that one dimension on which they compete with each other is social policy.

Carleas wrote:wealth-like feathers

BTW, I meant to write "wealth-like features", but "wealth-like feathers" is a funny and evocative typo, and I wish I were clever enough to come up with that sort of thing intentionally.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:54 pm

Carleas wrote:
Serendipper wrote:How do fees and ads fit into that?

I'd say it's not socialist because citizens lack ownership, both private and public. Fees, for example, would give citizens a kind of ownership.

But fees are more like rent, right? I still wouldn't own anything except what rights are allot by the TOS agreement. Now if you were to issue shares....

Ads, by contrast, would effectively monetize contributions rather than citizens, so that citizens would have power over the state in the form of bargaining power (i.e. "I'll keep adding $$ content if you make change xyz").

But don't I have that power now? You said speech maximization is your goal, so I could still offer my content-creation as a bargaining chip.

I would think you'd want to exclude oil-rich states from socialism, since the outcomes there are generally pretty shitty, even though they technically meet a lot of the criteria for being socialist.

There are many definitions of socialism, but one I prefer describes one pole of the dichotomy of dispersal/accretion of wealth. So even though the oil-rich states are sometimes lacking democracy and citizen-ownership of resources, the wealth is still distributed rather than hoarded. The only reason for a king to distribute wealth is for the good of society (social). There is no law saying the king has to be benevolent.

the outcomes there are generally pretty shitty

Brunei isn't too bad.

Brunei has the second-highest Human Development Index among the Southeast Asian nations, after Singapore, and is classified as a "developed country".[13] According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Brunei is ranked fifth in the world by gross domestic product per capita at purchasing power parity. The IMF estimated in 2011 that Brunei was one of two countries (the other being Libya) with a public debt at 0% of the national GDP. Forbes also ranks Brunei as the fifth-richest nation out of 182, based on its petroleum and natural gas fields.[14] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brunei

The biggest problem in Brunei is the Islamic religion.

Norway doesn't have that problem. Norway typically tops every measure of prosperity.

Norway has had the highest Human Development Index ranking in the world since 2009, a position also held previously between 2001 and 2006.[20] It also had the highest inequality-adjusted ranking[21][22][23] until 2018 when Iceland moved to the top of the list.[24] Norway ranked first on the World Happiness Report for 2017[25] and currently ranks first on the OECD Better Life Index, the Index of Public Integrity, and the Democracy Index.[26] Norway has one of the lowest crime rates in the world.[27]

On a per-capita basis, Norway is the world's largest producer of oil and natural gas outside of the Middle East.

Norway is a unitary constitutional monarchy with a parliamentary system of government, wherein the King of Norway is the head of state and the prime minister is the head of government. Power is separated among the legislative, executive and judicial branches of government, as defined by the Constitution, which serves as the country's supreme legal document.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norway

The shitty outcomes are either a result of religion or failure to distribute wealth (lack of socialism - ie Venezuela, owner of the world's largest oil reserve).

Serendipper wrote:Btw I'm glad there is no karma or voting: appeal to popularity.

We're not ever likely to have a system like this because it's a well-above-zero lift to implement, but conceptually I go back and forth on its utility. It can definitely be overdone and lead to bad outcomes, particularly on a site that tries to accommodate controversial worldviews. But some minimal version could improve things, especially by catching and demoting the overlooked dreck, and also by calling attention to particularly solid contributions.

You have much faith in people lol. The most sensible and factually accurate posts on zerohedge almost always have the most downvotes and consequently I've arranged for the comments to be displayed starting with the most downvoted.

One upgrade I could definitely get behind is to make the site more picture and video friendly. It would be nice to drag n drop and have videos cued instead of asking people to forward to a specific time.

Arguably there is a super minimal karma system: new user permissions are restricted for their first few posts, and non-custom ranks are tied to post counts. It's minimal enough that no one thinks of this as a karma system, but it's basically treating post count as karma.

I know and I don't care for either one ;) I mean, ok, I can see value in recognizing new users to welcome them, but I don't like accumulating clout. It's almost like getting older :character-oldtimer:

Silhouette wrote:A karma system or upvoting would establish a kind of currency, yes, but Capitalism requires the ability not only to spend such a currency, but also to invest it into some kind of private ownership - perhaps allowing members to spend their currency on owning sub-forums to run as they please, or at least within your divine monarchist law. Competition would then theoretically ensue, and the rubbish rulers would go out of business and have to sell their forum to someone more worthy.

I basically agree, although the analogy begins to breakdown as we get more literal. To have a true economy, we'd need some kind of currency which could both be earned by actions taken on the site, and spent on features. So, for example, users might get a certain amount of karma upon joining, spend karma both to post and to read others' posts, and receive some part of the karma that others spend to read their posts. Karma could be spend to found new forums or to promote posts or the like.

Stackexchange is essentially like that. You sign up and receive 10 points. After 100 points you get powers to edit questions, improve grammar, etc. After 1000 points you get moderation powers (question deletion, locking, etc). And so on. I left specifically because of it. It is a good analogy for capitalism though: the lucky first-comers have all the power to suppress competition and delete dissenting opinion, cementing their power. And the guy asking the question, who by definition cannot judge a good answer, has the power to award 15 points to the person who supplies the answer that he thinks is best, which usually happens before better answers have been submitted. The whole experience is hellish and I've heard similar complaints about wikipedia.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Silhouette » Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:27 am

Carleas wrote:I basically agree, although the analogy begins to breakdown as we get more literal. To have a true economy, we'd need some kind of currency which could both be earned by actions taken on the site, and spent on features. So, for example, users might get a certain amount of karma upon joining, spend karma both to post and to read others' posts, and receive some part of the karma that others spend to read their posts. Karma could be spend to found new forums or to promote posts or the like.

This is what I was saying, apart from spending karma both to post and to read others' posts - that's an interesting dimension that would mimic the pricing aspect of the capitalist system that is at the heart of the profit-making mechanism. I guess that's just as integral as the private property aspect that I was emphasising, and maybe that was what you were getting at when you said that by itself breaks down the analogy. You are a good and just god-king afterall, it is known.

A fascinating thought experiment for sure, and I wonder what it says about Capitalism, if anything, if it's doubtful whether its modelling would produce the best philosophy upon its application here?

Carleas wrote:I think we actually got to the point where things became unmanageable by moderators, and we need either a greater resource expenditure or a decentralized system. Instead, we failed to deliver either, people got frustrated and left, and we shrank back down to a size that could be managed by moderators.

Which is to say that the causal connection might go the other way: if we implemented the capitalist-like (or, more accurately, market-like) system, we would probably see more growth.

Good point, there were definitely much fewer people around when I returned to this place most recently - perhaps I missed the issue coming to a head, but I think I was certainly around before then to be familiar enough with what you're referring to. Giving them their own forums to bitch about the ones they didn't like would have been "a" solution, though leaving to start their own achieved much the same outcome and without the potential reputation damage that their continued contributions here would have caused in the long term to the forum as a whole. It was something akin to an invasion, and a seemingly expansionist one at that - aiming to replace rather than compete against.

I assume this is what you're talking about, at least? Would you have acted differently now you have the benefit of hindsight?

Carleas wrote:There are some parallels in what you're saying to what has happened with Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter over the past few years. Those platforms grew very rapidly, and experienced problems with moderation, leading to crackdowns followed by large-scale defections and the creation of new independent 'states'. Reddit and Twitter seem to have weathered the storm better, at least in terms of quality of discussion. Facebook used more communist-like central planning in the form of algorithmic moderation, and Reddit used more capitalist-like decentralization in the form of subreddits and karma. Twitter's approach has some lighter moderation plus organic controls of liking/retweeting/unfollowing/muting/blocking. The platforms have other differences, but it does appear that one dimension on which they compete with each other is social policy.

From what I've been hearing, Twitter has been resorting to some more authoritarian policies as of late, as well as Patreon and to some lesser extent Youtube. The problem is that the leaders in their respective specialities have come to resemble monopolies in practice, which I think mimics the trajectory of the capitalist market in general, and when you're denied from a monopoly it's not the same to demote yourself to the much smaller scale competition - thus the capitalist competition theory somewhat fails in practice in this respect. Facebook seems to be falling a bit out of favour, with Instagram holding up better in the picture sharing department at least, so the competition model isn't completely without success. I get the feeling that Reddit is relatively underground, well known but not as openly as Facebook and Twitter for example. I don't actually use most of these platforms so my understanding is somewhat lacking, but not so much that I can't see the parallels and potential sources of inspiration on how to run your own place.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:42 pm

Silhouette wrote:there were definitely much fewer people around when I returned to this place most recently

The decline in forum participation is a function of mobile device popularity, especially where the site software wasn't made accommodative soon enough. One could argue that the facebook and twitter giants stole customers, but I don't buy it since those services existed before smartphones. It boils down to being too difficult to type and read on small devices. ATV and motorcycle forums used to be bustling pre-2012, but are lucky if there are anyone but mods now; just the rogue guy asking for a manual for his bike. Correlations noticed after 2012 were probably coincidental with the device segue.

Facebook seems to be falling a bit out of favour

I heard facebook is for old people. The kids prefer snapchat.

monopoly

I've been thinking a lot lately about Friedman's idea that monopolies fall apart on their own, and what's impressive is that he called the fact that little bitty Kmart would buy Sears way back in 1980.

FWD to 19:49



As a matter of fact, you say "can Sears buy Kmart", but the way Kmart has been growing the question is gonna be can Kmart buy Sears LOL!

Donahue was concerned that the monopolistic Sears might buy Kmart, but Kmart bought Sears in 2004, and now both are on their way out due to Amazon.

There seems to be much truth in what Friedman said. Monopolies are still scary, but so far Friedman has been correct.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Silhouette » Sat Mar 09, 2019 12:04 am

Serendipper wrote:The decline in forum participation is a function of mobile device popularity

That's a good point - as one reason at least.

Serendipper wrote:I've been thinking a lot lately about Friedman's idea that monopolies fall apart on their own.

Hell, I'd be more than happy if you turned full-on free market Capitalist overnight, or right now even - so long as you had good reason for it. I think we should try out and imbed ourselves in all sorts of different ideologies in good faith, to be sure we are understanding them right.

I have nothing against the theory that monopolies tend to collapse under their own weight and go astray through their own inertia - especially in the face of increasingly changing environments and with the need for change and adaptation.
I do have something against the theory that Capitalism best encourages new adaptation from all sources - and not just from those already with connections and money, and that Capitalism adequately prevents monopolies emerging or even oligopolies collectively dominating the market for too long. There is value in the reliability of brands, and large collections of wealth can still adapt to a certain extent, so there are arguments in favour of what Capitalism encourages at the top end of wealth, but they are not necessarily better arguments. A constant influx of new business is undoubtedly better at adaptation, but where are the equal opportunities when initial conditions are so diverse regardless of natural talent? Capitalists praise natural talent as what they foster under their economic model, but so do I - I want natural talent to succeed, I just don't think Capitalism is optimal for this - and this is not to say that clichés about some black and white strawman opponent to Capitalism are what I am advocating instead!

Consider Neil deGrasse Tyson's experience, mentioned in his latest appearance in Joe Rogan's podcast if not elsewhere by himself or others: that government provides funding for untested ideas the best. Private investors need proof, security, convincing agreements to so generously offer the permission (money) that they happen to legally possess at the time. Unproven hypotheses? Insufficiently tested groundbreaking discoveries? Forget it, unless you're already rich and can fund it yourself... Capitalism takes over once it's safe, and grows the idea beyond its welcome and past the point of its danger. The owners gamble to reap the profits from the developers and the workers themselves - it's all so disproportionate as a system of distribtion of wealth! Do I therefore advocate Maoism or Stalinism? I hope nobody is so retarded as to think so.

To any posters like Pedro, being shocked by or denying the existence of people who don't subscribe to your ideology and by what they say (as above), only lends evidence to the hypothesis that you are hanging around too much in familiar territory and not exploring and familiarising yourself with other territory.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Sat Mar 09, 2019 12:20 am

Silhouette wrote:
Serendipper wrote:The decline in forum participation is a function of mobile device popularity

That's a good point - as one reason at least.

Thanks :)

Serendipper wrote:I've been thinking a lot lately about Friedman's idea that monopolies fall apart on their own.

Hell, I'd be more than happy if you turned full-on free market Capitalist overnight, or right now even - so long as you had good reason for it. I think we should try out and imbed ourselves in all sorts of different ideologies in good faith, to be sure we are understanding them right.

He resonated strongly with democrats in areas:

It can be argued that private charity is insufficient because the benefits from it accrue to people other than those who make the gifts— ... a neighborhood effect. I am distressed by the sight of poverty; I am benefited by its alleviation; but I am benefited equally whether I or someone else pays for its alleviation; the benefits of other people's charity therefore partly accrue to me. To put it differently, we might all of us be willing to contribute to the relief of poverty, provided everyone else did. We might not be willing to contribute the same amount without such assurance. In small communities, public pressure can suffice to realize the proviso even with private charity. In the large impersonal communities that are increasingly coming to dominate our society, it is much more difficult for it to do so.

Suppose one accepts, as I do, this line of reasoning as justifying governmental action to alleviate poverty; to set, as it were, a floor under the standard of life of every person in the community. [While there are questions of how much should be spent and how, the] arrangement that recommends itself on purely mechanical grounds is a negative income tax. ... The advantages of this arrangement are clear. It is directed specifically at the problem of poverty. It gives help in the form most useful to the individual, namely, cash. It is general and could be substituted for the host of special measures now in effect. It makes explicit the cost borne by society. It operates outside the market. Like any other measures to alleviate poverty, it reduces the incentives of those helped to help themselves, but it does not eliminate that incentive entirely, as a system of supplementing incomes up to some fixed minimum would. An extra dollar earned always means more money available for expenditure.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milton_Fr ... income_tax

He was an advocate of UBI, essentially.

Drug policy
Friedman also supported libertarian policies such as legalization of drugs and prostitution. During 2005, Friedman and more than 500 other economists advocated discussions regarding the economic benefits of the legalization of marijuana.[97]

Gay rights
Friedman was also a supporter of gay rights.[98] He never specifically supported same-sex marriage, instead saying "I do not believe there should be any discrimination against gays."[99]

Immigration
Friedman favored immigration, saying "legal and illegal immigration has a very positive impact on the U.S. economy."[100]


Looks like a Dem to me.

Capitalists praise natural talent as what they foster under their economic model, but so do I - I want natural talent to succeed, I just don't think Capitalism is optimal for this -

Capitalism rewards luck and the talent of exploitation. The guy who finds ways to exploit the most people is rewarded most.
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Carleas » Mon Mar 18, 2019 9:08 pm

Serendipper wrote:But fees are more like rent, right?

If ILP is a state, then fees are more like a flat per capita tax. I'd say that gives a sort of 'ownership', even if under the law there is none. For ILP-as-service, fees are like rent.

Serendipper wrote:But don't I have that power now? You said speech maximization is your goal, so I could still offer my content-creation as a bargaining chip.

Yes, though I think it's less than it would be if I were profit-maximizing through ads. For one thing, if we were ad funded, lurkers would be just as good as participants in terms of revenue. If you made posts that generated a lot of page views without generating a lot of discussion, that would still translate to increased ad revenue. So I'd not only want you participating, I'd want you tapping your social network to drive traffic this way. Again, that isn't real ownership, but it's strong effective ownership; I'd have a stake in people feeling like they own the site in the same way that people feel like they own their Blogger blogs.

(This is an idiosyncratic meaning of 'ownership' that only applies in the ILP-as-state metaphor, and in the way that citizens own the state. In a literal sense, under US law (and most other countries' law as I understand it), users own their posts and ILP has a license to display them. Disclaimer: IANYL.)

Carleas wrote:the outcomes [for oil-rich states] are generally pretty shitty

Serendipper wrote:Brunei...Norway...

I was referring to resource curse, although I thought that was more widely accepted than it appears to be.

I am surprised to see Venezuela classified as not-socialist. I don't think the definition is necessarily unreasonable, though I would object that our political systems should be defined based on the policies they employ rather than on the outcomes. A laissez-faire economy that results in an equitable distribution doesn't become socialist. I would define Venezuela as more socialist, since state ownership and control of industries is the policy.

Serendipper wrote:You have much faith in people lol. The most sensible and factually accurate posts on zerohedge almost always have the most downvotes and consequently I've arranged for the comments to be displayed starting with the most downvoted.

I agree that it depends on the quality and views of the community, which is a large assumption and one that needs to be revisited regularly. When I dream of unrealizable karma systems, they are weighted so that highly-ranked users have a larger say than lower-ranked users, and staff would lightly manipulate the rankings to guide the outcome (e.g. by boosting quality users' ranks and demoting shite users' ranks).

Serendipper wrote:Stackexchange is essentially like that. You sign up and receive 10 points. After 100 points you get powers to edit questions, improve grammar, etc. After 1000 points you get moderation powers (question deletion, locking, etc).

The model works very well for the original purpose of StackOverflow, i.e. specific technical questions with more or less objective answers. Jeff Atwood is pretty honest about the goal being to gamify the creation of a wiki, and from my experience (coding, troubleshooting ILP's server, using a linux desktop), the result is an invaluable set of answered questions for commonly encountered problems. For a more open ended discussion, and for topics like philosophy where there isn't always a clear right answer, it's a very bad system.

But it is worth noting that, if I do ever get around to bringing ILP up-to-date, it will be by moving to another Atwood project, Discourse. It does have some of StackExchange's karma-based permissions system, which we probably wouldn't use, but the other features are solid, and theory behind the choices is very much what I'd want to see in a replacement for phpBB.

Serendipper wrote:One upgrade I could definitely get behind is to make the site more picture and video friendly. It would be nice to drag n drop and have videos cued instead of asking people to forward to a specific time.

I disagree. Nothing against anyone else's preferences or mode of expression, but I sometimes regret adding the [youtube] tags. I don't want ILP to be an independent venue for Youtube comments, and I find that when I post something and someone responds with a video, I lose all interest. And don't get me started on picture heavy threads, I think I can count the number of times a picture has added anything to a conversation here on one hand.

I recognize that both of these opinions are obnoxiously biased; I know that I've linked to videos and embedded pictures, and it always feels justified when I do it. But truth be told, I prefer to write in a terminal window, my aesthetic is minimalist, and I would rather no videos or pictures than more. I know I'll have to cave on that, but I will never stop complaining about it.

(and, having said the foregoing: you can point to a specific place in a video by including a \( \texttt{&t=###} \) on the end of the URL, where \( \texttt{###} \) is the position in seconds in the video. If you click 'Share' below a video, there's a box at the bottom of the pane that says "Start at ___" that will autopopulate with the timestamp you're at when you click it, but you can change it to any other time stamp and it will autogenerate the URL with the right \( \texttt{&t=} \) value.)

Silhouette wrote:A fascinating thought experiment for sure, and I wonder what it says about Capitalism, if anything, if it's doubtful whether its modelling would produce the best philosophy upon its application here?

Not very much, I think. It's capitalism-within-capitalism, in that there's this competition for attention and production across all websites, and it isn't clear that within that larger game, a website that has a lower-level set of competitive games is going to be the most appealing; a rational actor should choose the site that gives the most for the least work and then leave when the resources are exhausted.

Silhouette wrote:Would you have acted differently now you have the benefit of hindsight?

Definitely, but I probably just would have screwed it up differently. I think Serendipper has a point about mobile, our mobile interface is terrible, and even that was a late addition.

But I also think the internet landscape has changed, people use fewer sites than they used to, they read and write shorter-form contributions and less linearly, they polarize more towards their tribes and avoid people they disagree with. In ILP's heyday, there were a lot of people desperately looking for political and religion and philosophical disagreement in the form of conversations. Now, sites are primarily trying to shut that disagreement down at the behest of users. That's a real cultural change, and a site like ILP doesn't cater to it as well as it did to the longer-form, pro-disagreement culture of the earlier internet. We're a throwback, and that would still be true if we'd done anything short of changing what we're fundamentally about.
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Carleas
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Re: Carleas - Is ILP capitalist-philanthropic or socialist?

Postby Serendipper » Tue Mar 19, 2019 7:29 pm

Carleas wrote:
Serendipper wrote:But fees are more like rent, right?

If ILP is a state, then fees are more like a flat per capita tax. I'd say that gives a sort of 'ownership', even if under the law there is none. For ILP-as-service, fees are like rent.

But the fee itself doesn't confer ownership. The amount of influence I have in government doesn't change in proportion to the amount of tax I pay. So ILP-as-a-state, I have no control and that would not change by virtue of a tax.

If ILP is a service charging a fee, then I'm purchasing something: citizenship. As a State, I'm a citizen regardless if I pay the tax, but as a Service, I'm a citizen only if I pay the tax.

Serendipper wrote:But don't I have that power now? You said speech maximization is your goal, so I could still offer my content-creation as a bargaining chip.

Yes, though I think it's less than it would be if I were profit-maximizing through ads. For one thing, if we were ad funded, lurkers would be just as good as participants in terms of revenue. If you made posts that generated a lot of page views without generating a lot of discussion, that would still translate to increased ad revenue. So I'd not only want you participating, I'd want you tapping your social network to drive traffic this way. Again, that isn't real ownership, but it's strong effective ownership; I'd have a stake in people feeling like they own the site in the same way that people feel like they own their Blogger blogs.

(This is an idiosyncratic meaning of 'ownership' that only applies in the ILP-as-state metaphor, and in the way that citizens own the state. In a literal sense, under US law (and most other countries' law as I understand it), users own their posts and ILP has a license to display them. Disclaimer: IANYL.)

Interesting. So, what exactly is the "capital" to you? I have some say of the means of production by virtue of the content that I'm producing, but I'm not clear on what the gain is. It's not money, since there are no ads, so what is it? And are you exploiting me to accumulate it?

ILP could only be considered capitalistic if the users are being exploited for some type of "profit" that isn't agreed to by the users. And the leverage used to exploit would be the competition narrative that there aren't better places to go.

Carleas wrote:the outcomes [for oil-rich states] are generally pretty shitty

Serendipper wrote:Brunei...Norway...

I was referring to resource curse, although I thought that was more widely accepted than it appears to be.

I am surprised to see Venezuela classified as not-socialist. I don't think the definition is necessarily unreasonable, though I would object that our political systems should be defined based on the policies they employ rather than on the outcomes. A laissez-faire economy that results in an equitable distribution doesn't become socialist.

I submit that a laissez-faire economy cannot possibly result in an equitable distribution as there is no mechanism for it.

I would define Venezuela as more socialist, since state ownership and control of industries is the policy.

I'm interested in the evidence for that.

This quora answer received 91 upvotes:

No; Venezuela is not a socialist state in the sense of having its government officially and constitutionally bound to socialist construction (this is what a “socialist state” means in the the Marxist-Leninist / Communist sense). At most, a socialist party, the United Socialist Party of Venezuela, held a majority in the National Assembly from 2000 to 2015 and two of the country’s presidents have belonged to this party.

Now let’s turn to the question you probably intended to ask: does Venezuela have a socialist economy?

The answer to this would unequivocally be no. The dynamic of capital accumulation still drives economic activity, most enterprises are privately-owned and profit seeking, the wage-labor relationship is still in place - and even more fundamentally - Venezuela operates in a global capitalist market system.

The government does intervene with the process of capital accumulation and with market processes and does create a negative and uncertain atmosphere for business in the name of fighting corruption and serving the needs of “the people”. But it hasn’t erected a new system to replace capitalism - nor could it accomplish such a monumental task on its own. At most Venezuela is a mixed economy with anti-business government policies that distort markets and retard growth.


But even if it were true that the government owns the means of production, I would simply ask who owns the government. If the people do not own the government that owns the means of production, then it's not socialism, but explotation, ie capitalism.

I still maintain that Venezuela is THE most capitalistic place on the planet; the people have no control over anything and are exploited for profit more than anywhere, as evidenced by all the turmoil in spite of having the world's largest oil reserve.

Chomsky said we impose capitalism on 3rd world countries to destroy them.

Serendipper wrote:You have much faith in people lol. The most sensible and factually accurate posts on zerohedge almost always have the most downvotes and consequently I've arranged for the comments to be displayed starting with the most downvoted.

I agree that it depends on the quality and views of the community, which is a large assumption and one that needs to be revisited regularly. When I dream of unrealizable karma systems, they are weighted so that highly-ranked users have a larger say than lower-ranked users, and staff would lightly manipulate the rankings to guide the outcome (e.g. by boosting quality users' ranks and demoting shite users' ranks).

Oh lordy... the tyranny of the minority lol. A physics guy with 60,000 rep on stack exchange deleted my question about whether a motorcycle sprocket-set of 11/33 or 13/39 would put more power to the ground because he couldn't see past the fact that they're both 1:3 ratios in order to take into account friction and chain weight. I was stunned that he could have accumulated that much reputation while being completely void of open-mindedness, especially to the fact that he might not know everything quite yet. Narcissism is an attribute of the ignorant and where karma accumulate exists, there will be the egotists at the top of the pile dispensing arrogance. I believe intelligence is a function of humility and I don't see how karma points selects for that trait.

Serendipper wrote:Stackexchange is essentially like that. You sign up and receive 10 points. After 100 points you get powers to edit questions, improve grammar, etc. After 1000 points you get moderation powers (question deletion, locking, etc).

The model works very well for the original purpose of StackOverflow, i.e. specific technical questions with more or less objective answers. Jeff Atwood is pretty honest about the goal being to gamify the creation of a wiki, and from my experience (coding, troubleshooting ILP's server, using a linux desktop), the result is an invaluable set of answered questions for commonly encountered problems. For a more open ended discussion, and for topics like philosophy where there isn't always a clear right answer, it's a very bad system.

Yes, I think you nailed it there.

But it is worth noting that, if I do ever get around to bringing ILP up-to-date, it will be by moving to another Atwood project, Discourse. It does have some of StackExchange's karma-based permissions system, which we probably wouldn't use, but the other features are solid, and theory behind the choices is very much what I'd want to see in a replacement for phpBB.

I don't know what that means.

Serendipper wrote:One upgrade I could definitely get behind is to make the site more picture and video friendly. It would be nice to drag n drop and have videos cued instead of asking people to forward to a specific time.

I disagree. Nothing against anyone else's preferences or mode of expression, but I sometimes regret adding the [youtube] tags. I don't want ILP to be an independent venue for Youtube comments, and I find that when I post something and someone responds with a video, I lose all interest. And don't get me started on picture heavy threads, I think I can count the number of times a picture has added anything to a conversation here on one hand.

Yes but anyone can post nonsense whether it be in picture form or text. If you peruse my threads I think you'll agree that pictures and video are essential to my conveyance strategy. And I don't just post a video, but give FWD instructions to specific times and also usually include a transcript. I do everything in my power to get what's in my head into your head, and hindering modes of expression is hindering that conveyance, all for the sake of a few hoodlums that annoy you. It's not worth it.

(and, having said the foregoing: you can point to a specific place in a video by including a \( \texttt{&t=###} \) on the end of the URL, where \( \texttt{###} \) is the position in seconds in the video. If you click 'Share' below a video, there's a box at the bottom of the pane that says "Start at ___" that will autopopulate with the timestamp you're at when you click it, but you can change it to any other time stamp and it will autogenerate the URL with the right \( \texttt{&t=} \) value.)

I tried that in the past and it didn't work. I click share, click the "start at" box, copy the link, post it here and it still displays the video from the beginning, ignoring the starting time. At least, it did when I tried it. Perhaps I'll try again. I'd have much less to complain about if I could post a cued video.
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