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Forum Post: Capitalists do not exploit workers.

Posted 2 years ago on June 9, 2012, 3:09 p.m. EST by ScrewyL (809)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Böhm-Bawerk argued that capitalists do not exploit workers; they accommodate workers by providing them with income well in advance of the revenue from the output they helped to produce.

84 Comments

84 Comments


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[-] 7 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Böhm-Bawerk lived and wrote during the 'Gilded Age' of capitalism. Workers were massed in sweatshops, children worked assembly line shifts, women and children worked and died in coal mines, all of them dying by the thousands per day while the Captains of Industry lived in luxurious mansions along Long Islands Gold Coast that intentionally resembled the castles and manors of Europes Monarchs.

Fuck you and the faux elite you represent.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

There are two economic systems commonly called capitalism, one was British free trade, which was really just an advanced form of feudalism, and there is the American system:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_System_%28economic_plan%29

The American System eventually became that system in which factory workers made the equivalent of $20-$30 an hour, were able to buy houses and cars, as well as send their kids to college.

With this kind of income they were also able to become capitalists by opening their own machine shops.

Today, our system is mostly British free trade, and I think we'd be better off going back to the American System.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

I never thought Karl Marx was writing about American Capitalism. That is a new paradigm.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

From what I've read, Marx misunderstood American Capitalism, thinking it was just an outgrowth of British free trade. In a sense, American Capitalism could be considered "worker's capitalism" so it should be something for communists to embrace.

Living in China, where communism is increasingly marginal, I've notice many Chinese people seem to like this idea.

There have been numerous times though, including today, when free trade policies have dominated America.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

That kind of makes sense. This year I wondered a bit about German influence after WWII on our cpaitalism. Even in 1930s we had people that admired the Germans and we had German migrants. I was just thinking about how smart and competitive Germany Scientist would have been in our post WWII government and Department of War. Competitive Europeans would have raised our own 'Game' so to speak. Germans and French we more influential in the US Culture than the Russians for instance who don't seem to contribute much to our culture except for maybe Ballet.

And then also ... since I am talking culture. The Catholics and the Chinese would have have influence. The Chinese only later after Nixon opened most favored nation to them. But it is interesting the policies and attitudes toward the natives and common workers.

I'm trying to find a conspiracy of how loose government regulations and individual rights might have come from our military officers and our studies of other countries and forms of governance.....

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Actually, the American System had quite an influence on the development of industrialism in Germany. Sorry for this great big link, its to a PDF, if anyone can advise me on how to minimize such links, I'd appreciate it:

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CGoQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.larouchepub.com%2Feiw%2Fpublic%2F2006%2F2006_10-19%2F2006_10-19%2F2006-17%2Fpdf%2F66-67_617_histcarey.pdf&ei=k_feT_ipDIeW2QXdpOzgAQ&usg=AFQjCNG5nG088rWJ8umNAypryOV_cyV0_Q&sig2=hp58ahUU8502M-jxzWmxRA

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Thanks. I might have to recheck. Sometimes my computer bombs out like now.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Its a very interesting topic. The American System at times influenced Germany, Russia, Japan and China, and I wouldn't be surprised if there were others as well.

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

Germans and French we more influential in the US Culture than the Russians for instance who don't seem to contribute much to our culture except for maybe Ballet.

Ballet... Your comment is hilarious, ludicrous, sad, ridiculous, a lame generalization, all at once.

I'm trying to find a conspiracy of how loose government regulations and individual rights might have come from our military officers and our studies of other countries and forms of governance.....

You're trying to find a conspiracy? Why don't you try to find the truth?

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Ah, Yes Russian Military is very influencial on the World. This of the Kalishnikov Family of Weapons like the SKS and AK-47. The Model 1891 Infantry Rifle Mosin–Nagant is also popular.

Harbin today is still very much influenced by its Russian past. A city once under Russian rule, it is now a center of trade with that country.

The influence of Russia came with the construction of the China Far East Railway, an extension of the Trans-Siberian Railway, and Harbin, known formerly as a fishing village, began to prosper as the largest commercial center of North Eastern Asia.

Tsarist Russia encouraged Russian settlement in their important Trans-Siberian-Railway outpost by waiving the then 25-year long military service obligation. For Jews who settled there, the restrictions applying in Russia were also waived.

Harbin Sausage The local cuisine in Harbin is also Russian-influenced. Harbin's bakeries are famous for their bread da-lie-ba(大列巴) in local dialect, derived from the Russian word khleb for "bread". Harbin's sausages (harbin hong-chang) are another notable product, in that they tend to be of a much more European flavour than other Chinese sausages.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_culture

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_culture#Literature

Looks like lots of Russian Writers, Thinkers and Philosophers for us all to respect and look for in media.....

But Linguistically in America we don't have many Russian words and I don't see Russian Words in Science and in Medicine (but I am neither).

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

You don't have Russian words because you pushed the Russians away during the cold war. Russia has been an important player in science. They are one of the major forces of space exploration.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Fair enough. You sound like someone that has learned much in life.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

There is no finding the Truth in the USA. 1) We are separated from history by years, generations, and lame text books 2) Most of us can't afford to return to University to study 3) The internet is great, but it started in 1990 or so and there is a lot of Primary Source Documents that are not and will not be added to the Internet 4) We can't all travel around the world to see museum and other history storage locations.

Pretty sure I was being curious and cynical not serious when I said conspiracy....

http://occupywallst.org/forum/declaration-of-the-new-american-union-smaller-stre/

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

Igor Stravinsky moved to US and pretty much changed the face of Hollywood music single handedly. Kandinsky was a major influence in visual arts, even up to the post-modernists like Pollock. The moon explorations of the Russians inspired USA do land a man on the moon. The cold war inspired many films and books in which the Russians were the enemies. The list goes on. If you think Russians only gave us ballet, you are sadly mistaken.

True, there is no finding truth in USA. That's because conspiracy theories have replaced proper research and Facebook has replaced proper news outlets. Americans now turn to 12 year old Canadians to learn about the economy, and LaRouche fans like arturo who have no idea what they are talking about.

As we start building a better world, it's best to leave it to the Europeans. Americans should stay out of the way. They can eat burgers and watch Jerry Springer while the rest of the world progresses.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Well what is wrong with LaRouche history? I've seen some of the info and like the presentation. The problem comes up there are people that remember the quotes of famous Americans and those people will reject internet articles based on their memory of quotes.

Well that is all I can figure. LaRouche stuff is well produced, but how can we reject it out of hand. Remember LaRouche was smeered for his political ambitions. That is normal cut throat US Politics. Doesn't mean all his ideas should be condemed.

Condeming a man whole is a Cognitive Error, All or Nothing thinking, Black and White thinking, or just a personal attack.

So what do you condem LaRouche for specifically?

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

The use of conspiracy theory like thinking, i.e. bad research habits and a penchant for the conspiracy explanations.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

Thanks. I'll look at those things.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

utterly mealiness to me

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

From what I've read, Marx misunderstood American Capitalism,

The problem is you only read LaRouche.

[-] 0 points by shadzhairart (-357) 2 years ago

Nonsense. Karl Marx was a major economist, he wouldn't have misunderstood American Capitalism.

In a sense, American Capitalism could be considered "worker's capitalism" so it should be something for communists to embrace.

Utter nonsensical drivel.


LaRouche has ruined your mind.

[-] 1 points by arturo (3169) from Shanghai, Shanghai 2 years ago

Hah! My Chinese communist friends like the idea.

Just because somebody was a "major" anything doesn't mean they're always right, unless of course you want to worship Marx like a god.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

Middleaged is a great name

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

was supposed to be kind of anonymous.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 2 years ago

Böhm-Bawerk was Austrian, what does the Gilded Age in the US have to do with him? What does the era he wrote in have to do with anything? One is right or wrong on the merits (or lack thereof) of one's arguments. I guess the above is how you have to reply when you have nothing substantive to say.

The left is just miffed that Böhm-Bawerk wrote devastating critiques of marxism: http://mises.org/media/1239

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

How workers were treated by capitalists during the 'Gilded Age' in the US is ample proof that Böhm-Bawerk was wrong in his premise. The world didn't live in a vacuum then. It didn't matter that he was Austrian.

How naive is that line of thought? That's like stating the American Revolution had no influence on the French Revolution because France is in Europe and somehow people don't communicate ideas across that distance. The Austrians knew damn well how workers in the US were treated, whats sad is that it was accepted as the norm by faux elitists.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 2 years ago

In reality the workers were doing better than ever. Compare backwards not forwards. It was also the free market that continued to raise their standard of living. This proved B-B right.

BTW, how well were the workers treated under socialism? Not well. They were so poor that socialism collapsed. Examples are the USSR & empire, Somalia, Zimbabwe, Guyana http://theinternationallibertarian.blogspot.com/2009/12/socialism-in-guyana.html

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

"After 1500 industry gradually grew but most people continued to live by farming.

Even children who did not go to school were expected to work. They helped their parents by doing tasks such as scaring birds when seeds were sown They also helped to weave wool and did other household tasks.

During the 19th century the factory system gradually replaced the system of people working in their own homes or in small workshops. In England the textile industry was the first to be transformed. The changes caused a great deal of suffering to poor people.

The Industrial Revolution created a huge demand for female and child labour. Children had always done some work but at least before the 19th century they worked in their own homes with their parents or on land nearby. Children's work was largely seasonal so they did have some time to play. When children worked in textile factories they often worked for more than 12 hours a day."

In the early 19th century parliament passed laws to curtail child labour. However they all proved to be unenforceable. The first effective law was passed in 1833.....It stated that Children aged 13 to 18 must not work for more than 69 hours a week."

Taken from A Brief History of Work: http://www.localhistories.org/work.html

So we went from working at home in cottage industries or farms, where family life was stressed, children did work, but mostly seasonally with down time to play and be kids.... to industrialization where laws had to be passed to keep children from working more than 70 hours a week in factories.

'Yessum masser Toby happy he no slave no more, but sur I needs to sleep sometime.'

[-] -1 points by darrenlobo (204) 2 years ago

Professor Ludwig von Mises, the great Austrian economist; put it well when he noted that the generally deplorable conditions extant for centuries before the Industrial Revolution, and the low levels of productivity which created them, caused families to embrace the new opportunities the factories represented: “It is a distortion of facts to say that the factories carried off the housewives from the nurseries and the kitchens and the children from their play. These women had nothing to cook with and to feed their children. These children were destitute and starving. Their only refuge was the factory. It saved them, in the strict sense of the term, from death by starvation.”[3]

Private factory owners could not forcibly subjugate “free-labour” children; they could not compel them to work in conditions their parents found unacceptable. The mass exodus from the socialist Continent to increasingly capitalist, industrial Britain in the first half of the 19th century strongly suggests that people did indeed find the industrial order an attractive alternative. And no credible evidence exists which argues that parents in these early capitalist days were any less caring of their offspring than those of pre-capitalist times.


Though it is inaccurate to judge capitalism guilty of the sins of parish apprenticeship, it would also be inaccurate to assume that free-labor children worked under ideal conditions in the early days of the Industrial Revolution. By today’s standards, their situation was clearly bad. Such capitalist achievements as air conditioning and high levels of productivity would, in time, substantially ameliorate it, however. The evidence in favor of capitalism is thus compellingly suggestive: From 1750 to 1850, when the population of Great Britain nearly tripled, the exclusive choice of those flocking to the country for jobs was to work for private capitalists.


Conditions of employment and sanitation were best, as the Factory Commission of 1833 documented, in the larger and newer factories. The owners of these larger establishments, which were more easily and frequently subject to visitation and scrutiny by inspectors, increasingly chose to dismiss children from employment rather than be subjected to elaborate, arbitrary, and ever-changing rules on how they might run a factory employing youths. The result of legislative intervention was that these dismissed children, most of whom needed to work in order to survive, were forced to seek jobs in smaller, older, and more out-of-the-way places where sanitation, lighting, and safety were markedly inferior.[15] Those who could not find new jobs were reduced to the status of their counterparts a hundred years before, that is, to irregular and grueling agricultural labor, or worse—in the words of Mises—“infested the country as vagabonds, beggars, tramps, robbers, and prostitutes.”[16]

So it is that child labor was relieved of its worst attributes not by legislative fiat, but by the progressive march of an ever more productive, capitalist system. Child labor was virtually eliminated when, for the first time in history, the productivity of parents in free labor markets rose to the point that it was no longer economically necessary for children to work in order to survive. The emancipators and benefactors of children were not legis lators or factory inspectors, but factory owners and financiers. Their efforts and investments inmachinery led to a rise in real wages, to a growing abundance of goods at lower prices, and to an incomparable improvement in the general standard of living. http://www.thefreemanonline.org/columns/child-labor-and-the-british-industrial-revolution/

[-] 2 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Oh please LUDWIG FUCKING MISES, next you're going to quote CATO, and AEI.... spare me the revisionist history they present. Capitalism is not progressive. It is expansionist with no end to the productivity needed to keep feeding the machine. It completely fails to recognize the need for sustainable growth in world of finite resources.

Capitalism is a virus. When its finished devouring its host we will all be gone.

[-] 0 points by darrenlobo (204) 2 years ago

I can present the truth to you but I can't make you face it. Keep up the socialist sloganeering, I'm sure you sound great to yourself. Ciao

[-] -2 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

I do not represent a faux elite. I have worked hard to earn every dollar I have, and haven't received every dollar I've earned. I know well of the evils of capitalism. Your vitriol belies a bias you haven't yet admitted.

[-] 4 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Let me admit it now then. I am biased against the system that has done its best to exploit the workforce, contrary to any dead economists opinions.

You don't represent them? But you choose to defend them and the system that made them.

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

That is all well and good, but please reconcile the fact that investment capital facilitates work ("accommodates workers") with your bias.

[-] 5 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Demand facilitates work. Business owners only hire staff when demand for their product increases to the point that they need to increase production. Investment capital on its own does nothing.

[-] 1 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Not true. Many (if not most) products are created before there is any demand -- that R&D is a risk undertaken by an entrepreneur -- and in the real world, it is only after that new product is almost fully developed, does anybody FINALLY start getting paid for it -- and hopefully, they get paid enough to recoup the initial layout of funds for engineering and marketing.

It doesn't matter wether the workers do it, a rich bastard does it, you do it, or I do it. It takes money up front. It takes capital.

Now, you might successfully argue to me that the culprit is that it takes money to do anything in this world -- but despite my sympathy with that view, it's a different question than this one.

[-] 3 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Right that is a risk. You can invent a widget, produce it before it actually sells, but if no one buys it (demand) you lose....ultimately demand is what matters.

What you suggest is that investment capital (debt) speeds growth, but at a cost. A smart business will grow and hire without the need for debt (through savings of profit) at a sustainable rate with much lower risk. Investment capital of itself does nothing.

[-] 1 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

A smart business will grow and hire without the need for debt (through savings of profit)

Fair enough. The capitalist here then would be the "smart businessman" -- question is, would he be "exploiting" his workers (and by that I mean definition #2 in a bad way)

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

If he did not share equitably in the profits... a resounding yes, he is exploiting the workers. By being a 'smart' businessman, not using investment capital and therefore being in debt (added risk), the risk is now much lower, almost even with the workers risk level.

Workers when agreeing to work for an employer take on risk as well. The risk that the company you are giving most of your waking hours to will not go under, and the risk that you will get a pay check. The risk and faith that you will run the business correctly, keep its good name up, for as a representative of the company the worker has a reputation as well.

[-] 0 points by SteveKJR (-497) 2 years ago

Let me ask you - what is the main purpose for a person wanting to invest thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars to "start a business"?

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Large, large profit. Personally, I think its insanity to risk that much money just to start a business.

I and three other friends from high school kicked in 2 grand each, 8 grand total investment and ran a business that cleared 1.2 million gross profit the first year. We made an obscene amount of money and called it quits when the market changed. One does not have to invest hundreds of thousands to be sucessful.

[-] 0 points by SteveKJR (-497) 2 years ago

Just curious what kind of business was it that you ran? To make 1.2 million gross profit is doing pretty good especially in the first year with 8 grand of investment.

[-] 1 points by geo (2638) from Concord, NC 2 years ago

Brokering electronic components in the early 1980's.

[-] -1 points by DKAtoday (34909) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Meth lab. {:-]) just kidding geo.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I largely agree with you (this is an uncontroversial statement), and in a world where we have a monetary system, it does indeed require capital to do things (like innovate). However, this is only a superficial analysis. What's to say an employee owned company couldn't attract investment capital and innovate just as well as conventional companies? What about university research (real science tends to happen in universities).

So the arguments in support of our current system are usually not comparative (in other words, they rarely compare our current economic model against more innovative and people centered alternatives). There's no reason to think our current economic arrangement is the only possible way in the entire universe to generate innovation.

But anyway, yes, there's a good argument that supply creates demand (sort of a restatement of Say's law), but even leaving more far reaching ideas aside, most of our economy is not really innovation driven (in terms of scientific research and capital intensive investment). Most of it is things like restaurants, retail stores, coffee shops, healthcare clinics, laundry mats, grocery stores, etc.

[-] 3 points by disscombobilated (3) from Palo Alto, CA 2 years ago

I used to run a masonry company. That type of work has been around since the beginning. My clients enjoyed their masonry the day that we finished a project. Sometimes it was on a Tuesday. My workers didn't get paid until Friday while I was paid much of the money well in advance of even starting. Böhm-Bawerk's point is wrong in most cases. Capitalism works when management is not greedy. The most fluid form of management greed is the bribery of officials to make laws that favor their greed. I never paid my best workers less than 95% of what I paid myself.

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

It's important to keep in mind that there are two types of "work", which can't be treated the same:

Production Development

Masonry is an example of production. Capital needs aren't stretched out in an ongoing need. For you to finish a job requires a certain about of investment and time from you, and you have a very short period of time in which you deman payment, and you've asked your employees to bear the risk with you (they don't get paid until...), and they have agreed.

That's very different from "Development" work, in which many workers may come-and-go after they do their parts, while the "capitalist" continually invests their money, inflating their risk for that hopeful payout one day. In this model, the workers to NOT share the risk, nor the rewards; they simply get paid for what they offered the capitalist.

Some of the other arguements here conflate these two different cases, and it leads to confusion.

[-] 2 points by Riley2011 (110) from New Britain, CT 2 years ago

Wages are becoming lower Retirement is almost a thing of the past Employees are increasingly having to pay more for insurance Hours- please....we work like pigs compared to most countries- less vacation...why? we are not protected in our jobs.... The union is being dismantled...and we are not talking about wage protection- I personally have perfect evals but work in a hell hole and our union has been dismantled- I work in fear Here is the thing- I think most people in the system don't take vacation or rest because they are scared and the Capitalist pigs can treat us like vermin and replace us...watch- more hours...less pay- we are not in a Capitalist society- America was that when a family of 4 could survive on 1 wage...still take a nice vacation and have healthy food on the table- not corporate sludge....

[-] 1 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

I apologize, I cannot empathize when I hear about "fear of the union losing", because -- in my career -- I have never and will never have a union of any kind; there never have been unions to protect workers in my industry.

[-] 1 points by stevebol (1269) from Milwaukee, WI 2 years ago

How was your union dismantled?

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (34909) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

HaH - that is funny ( kind of ) some of us in the shop would occasionally look up from our work catch the eye of the guy across from us and yell out our battle cry - More Hours - Less Pay. Newbies wondered - WTF??? Did not take them long to catch on to the sarcasm though.

Another one was : I Live - For My Job.

This was all especially funny when working in the summertime in an uninsulated converted horse barn - outside temp 80 degrees inside temp over 110 degrees.

Yep - good times.

Ah - yes another one ( because we were always expected to make up for loss of production on 1st shift ) was just plain and simply screamed at the top of your lungs - MORE PARTS - you heard that one all of the time from all over the shop.

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (34909) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

From New Britain?

I used to run and maintain New Britain screw machines.

They may not be related but I thought it interesting as the job was also a hell-hole of massive amounts of hours on high production where the workers were treated like fuses - burn one out pop in a new one.

[-] 2 points by TitusMoans (2451) from Boulder City, NV 2 years ago

You know what Marx, Engels, and others thought about Bohm-Bawerk and the entire Austrian School of economics. I can't say that I differ.

[-] -1 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Ad hominem. Please stop wasting our time.

[-] 1 points by Middleaged (5140) 2 years ago

capitalism in its modern form is usually traced to the Mercantilism of the 16th–18th Centuries. The Opium Wars started in 1838 with one of the FIRST CORPORATIONS, British East India Company.

Mercantilist governments in Europe objected to the perpetual drain of silver to pay for Asian commodities, and so European traders often sought to generate profits from intra-regional Asian trade to pay for their purchases to be sent back home.[3] In the 18th century, despite ardent protest from the Qing government, British traders began importing opium from India. the Yongzheng Emperor prohibited the sale and smoking of opium in 1729...

The Opium Wars, also known as the Anglo-Chinese Wars, divided into the First Opium War from 1839 to 1842 and the Second Opium War from 1856 to 1860, were the climax of disputes over trade and diplomatic relations between China under the Qing Dynasty and the British Empire. After the inauguration of the Canton System in 1756, which restricted trade to one port and did not allow foreign entrance to China, the British East India Company faced a trade imbalance in favour of China and invested heavily in opium production to redress the balance. British and United States merchants brought opium from the British East India Company's factories in Patna and Benares,[1] in the Bengal Presidency of British India, to the coast of China, where they sold it to Chinese smugglers who distributed the drug in defiance of Chinese laws. Aware both of the drain of silver and the growing numbers of addicts, the Daoguang Emperor demanded action. Officials at the court, who advocated legalization of the trade in order to tax it were defeated by those who advocated suppression.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Opium_Wars

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capitalsim#History

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 2 years ago

BREAKING: You Know That TED Talk You Weren't Supposed To See? Here It Is.

Posted 2 hours ago on May 23, 2012, 4:54 p.m. EST by GirlFriday (4660) This content is user submitted and not an official statement

http://www.upworthy.com/breaking-you-know-that-nick-hanauer-ted-talk-you-werent-supposed-to-see-here-it-?g=3&c=dfa1

[-] 1 points by TrevorMnemonic (5827) 2 years ago

and Coca-Cola argues that there is no direct correlation to drinking lots of sugary drinks and obesity.

Seriously, they're doing that right now.

[-] 1 points by riethc (1149) 2 years ago

What makes capitalism function so well is a lack of ideology.

[-] 1 points by nichole (525) 2 years ago

They make money on top of money and drive down operating costs, don't even get me started on the shareholders. Oh, let's just jump through every hoop for them. And shoppers, we must drive down prices. Basically, everything is oriented around people who have money and every inventive way to ensure they can have everything they want and make more money with their money.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

Dictionary. com; Definition 1, for the verb "Exploit"-to utilize, especially for profit; turn to practical account. So yeah they do. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/exploit

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/exploit

ex·ploit [ik-sploit] verb (used with object)

1) to utilize, especially for profit; turn to practical account: to exploit a business opportunity.

2) to use selfishly for one's own ends: employers who exploit their workers.

3) to advance or further through exploitation; promote: He exploited his new movie through a series of guest appearances.


Connotatively, #2 is what was meant, and the implication argued against is that it is to the detriment of the workers, particularly because:

"capitalists ... accommodate workers by providing them with income well in advance of the revenue ..."

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 2 years ago

The fact that employers "accommodate" workers by providing them income well in advance does not preclude definition 2. Slave owners provided food and shacks to slaves "in advance" of selling that cotton. Any no. 2 type exploitation there?

[-] 1 points by djarkarta (4) 2 years ago

If we despise the 1%ers we should at least know who they are. I stumbled on a site that reputably represents how the rich got rich, how much they are worth and what they do with their money. Richvillains.com. you get to vote on them as well. Go get informed. We should have names and facts.

[-] 1 points by writerconsidered123 (344) 2 years ago

workers work pay check to pay check they literally can't affort to wait until an employer makes a profit for their work to get paid.

on the other hand employers have the capital to put up front to pay workers in order to achieve their profit later on. the old ratio was employers had to make a 3 to 1 ratio in order to make a profit now I'm not sure what that ratio is now. probably 12 to 1 or greater

in the end employers are acting in self interest to pay workers up front to make a profit down the road

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Thereby accommodating their work by allowing them to feed themselves.

It bears saying since most people here have reached for the argument -- but: Not paying your workers enough, or not paying them reliably, has no place in this argument!!!

That is a separate issue, as it does NOT meet the requirements of "Accommodating workers"

!

[-] 1 points by writerconsidered123 (344) 2 years ago

so you want to keep the argument narrowed down for your personal interested, and actually your wrong because at the top you say capitolist do not exploit workers. The very nature of exploitation goes far beyond the accommodation argument.

another point I want to make is employers use employees as an investment so it's less about acommodation and more about future investment.

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

No it's simple logic. The set of "all capitalists" is a SUPERSET of the set of "capitalists who exploit workers", therefore it does not follow that capitalists exploit workers. SOME might, but then I know of some communist economies which exploit their workers by, say, starving and killing them by the villiage-full. (Since we're getting off topic, that is)

employers use employees as an investment

And employees do the same; when you start at a new job, is it not your expectation that you will be employed longer than you were unemployed, or are you just reaching for that first paycheck?

[-] 1 points by writerconsidered123 (344) 2 years ago

you no what this entire paragragh is total incomprehesable shit

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

you no what this entire paragragh is total incomprehesable shit

I'll try to help:

you = You, no = know, what = what?, this = This, total = totally, incomprehesable = incomprehensible shit = shit!

or:

You know what? This entire paragraph is totally incomprehensible shit!

There. Much more comprehensible now.

[-] 0 points by writerconsidered123 (344) 2 years ago

No it's simple logic. The set of "all capitalists" is a SUPERSET of the set of "capitalists who exploit workers", WTF does this mean

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

lt means you need to go lookup sets, supersets, and subsets before we can continue this conversation.

[-] 1 points by writerconsidered123 (344) 2 years ago

actually it means you need to learn how to write as for this conversation I'm done

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Thank you for your contribution.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I suppose you can pretty much argue anything, but in this case it's really not very relevant, because employee owned companies are also able to pay its worker/owners, and there's no reason to think that employee ownership would change this dynamic in any significant way. If a group of people came together with the objective of starting an employee owned enterprise, as long as they had access to the same sort of financing a conventional company has access to (or maybe some form of alternative financing, like crowd funding), there's no difference in its ability to pay workers. Therefore, this argument in support of wage servitude is just absurd.

This argument rests on the premise that there's no possible alternative to the conventional ownership model, and somehow only a top down managed corporation can pay workers in advance of earning revenue. Honestly, I'm not sure I've ever heard a more ridiculous argument in support of the conventional capitalist framework.

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

That's a very loaded statement. Use of the term "Wage Servitude" does not help your argument, and this is not an argument in favor of wage servitude. It is an argument against the commonly held Bolshevist belief that capitalism exploits workers -- yet it appears self evident, given THIS argument, (despite that you can argue anything!) that is not the case.

It appears evident that without 'capital' investment, workers would have to find compensation for work just-in-time, which would be a much harder life -- and one I have lived myself.

Ask any communist economy.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Why would we think worker owned companies cannot attract capital investment? What law of nature makes this an impossible idea?

[-] -1 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Those workers would be the capital investors in the company.

Regarding which law of nature -- diversification. Don't shit where you sleep. Would much rather have someone else paying the bills, especially some rich bastard.

[-] 2 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

So in other words, there is no intelligent argument in support of this quackery, just silly sayings and divisive rhetoric disparaging rich people. Oh, diversification a law of nature? Obviously you've never studied nature, and I think workers at the thousands of successful employee owned companies in the United States would take issue with your ridiculous remark that they somehow shit where they sleep. My advice, don't be so easily satisfied with simplistic arguments that reduce to utter bullshit.

[-] -2 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

"some rich bastard" was sarcasm, actually meaning the opposite. Pay attention!

--It is not ME who asked for a "law of nature" in regards to matters of ECONOMICS. That was ALL you, m'friend. I simply begrudgingly half-obliged your terminology, and your backpedalling is disingenuous.

"Diversification" is a reference to this: Why should I invest in the same risky endeavor that pays my salary? Why would I shit where I sleep? Much better to have someone else take that risk on me, and for me to take that risk elsewhere, since I am then exposed on only one front at a time (assuming I choose my diversified risks smartly)

Furthermore, these unicorns you speak of, worker-owned companies, are of course possible, but not without one of two things: 1) large initial investments in line with the capital investment model, or 2) workers taking huge risks with their compensation and their very lives.

The whole argument here is that capitalists /accommodate/ workers by reducing the initial risk inherent in doing a job prior to getting paid.

That argument remains solidly unrefuted.

--Try working some time for a "rich capitalist bastard" who does NOT pay on time, and you will learn the incredible value of a paycheck.

Those "silly sayings" were meant to convey not-so-silly CONCEPTS, which were apparently lost. I'm sorry; I thought you might contribute, but you have only distracted. Good day.

[-] 5 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

Dude, you should have quit while you weren't that far behind :)

[-] 0 points by ScrewyL (809) 2 years ago

Dude, this guy above gets it:

geo (1399) from Concord, NC 2 hours ago

...Workers when agreeing to work for an employer take on risk as well. The risk that the company you are giving most of your waking hours to will not go under, and the risk that you will get a pay check. The risk and faith that you will run the business correctly, keep its good name up, for as a representative of the company the worker has a reputation as well.

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 2 years ago

I'm not really sure how this is relevant to your original point? Sure, risk flows both ways, but this has nothing to do with the fact that employee owned companies exist, they tend to outperform their conventional counterparts (in terms of productivity and survival), and provided those companies have fair access to capital (and there's no rational reason why they shouldn't), then we have a model that is not amenable to charges of worker exploitation (after all, if the employees own the company, if there is any exploitation, then they'd be exploiting themselves, versus a top down conventional company, where workers are forced to submit themselves to the dominion of their boss).

Moreover, the charge of exploitation (in conventional Marxist theory) is really about workers not keeping all the fruits of their labor (related to a labor theory of value). I can think of plenty of reasons to critique this aspect of Marxist theory, but Böhm-Bawerk's theory isn't one of them. I think if workers had a reasonable choice, work for an employee owned company or rent their labor (in which case they don't keep the surplus of their productivity), then there might be a better case for saying the worker is making a preference based choice (versus being coerced into wage servitude).

Keep in mind, Austrian economists aimed their cross hairs at Marxism (and command/control socialism), not anarchism (which they never really interacted with). The fundamental precept of anarchism is that power relationships and structures are, in general, undesirable. It calls for participatory democracy in every aspect of life (including economic affairs).

To be clear, I think command & control socialism is, in general (although it may be justifiable in limited cases), a terrible idea. It is no less authoritarian than what we have now. Marxism was doomed for failure from the beginning. It's capacity for totalitarianism made its utopian goals impossible. This was pointed out by anarchist philosophers (like Pierre Proudhon) long before Austrian economics ever existed. In essence, you don't really seem to understand our philosophy (and so you're entire line of reasoning is one giant red herring). If you want to pick a fight with Marxists, I'm sure there's plenty of Marxist internet forums on the web (but this isn't one of them). If you don't understand the profound differences between Marxism and anarchism, then I suggest you do some reading (assuming you care enough to become informed and better understand the anarchist perspective).

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (34909) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Worker owned have a great advantage. Everyone works for industry standard wages - usually on the upper end of the scale - and when the years business is taken care of - taxes paid, material outlay for the upcoming year laid out and all of that - anyway when the net profits are figured each employee gets their share - often times it can be as much or more then their yearly salary - in lean times they still get their wages just not as big of a yearly profit sharing bonus. Very flexible in that regard - and so very very competitive.

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (34909) from Coon Rapids, MN 2 years ago

Well you can recognize that - so whats your problem?

[-] 0 points by beautifulworld (21368) 2 years ago

No. Capitalists exploit workers regardless of how far in the future the revenue from the output that the workers helped produce comes forth because they never compensate the workers for the full profit of what they have produced....ever. Therefore, it is exploitation.