America and capitalism (facts and thoughts)

On 1/3/2015 I published “HOW BAD ARE AMERICA AND CAPITALISM?

The post received many comments. Surprisingly, nobody told that capitalism is bad or that America is a bad country.

However, many comments are heartfelt and very interesting.

Today I want to respond to Carl D’ Agostino (you can find full text of his comments in the post “HOW BAD ARE AMERICA AND CAPITALISM?”). I will respond only to his most important thoughts.

He wrote: “Most of the condos you speak of are investment property from rich South Americans or French Canadians. There is great wealth here but over 50% south Florida residents at minimum wage and poverty level. This place will implode: not enough water, electricity, more people getting welfare help than paying into system to support it”.

In my post  I wrote about Hollywood in Florida. We rented apartments here in winter only from working Americans for the last 13 yearsAll of them have houses or apartments in other places. During last 10 years many our friends retired and bought apartments here. Today we know more than 500 people in the area who worked hard and now enjoy life here. I mentioned in my earlier post occupations of some of them. Today I want to add: construction workers, mechanics, office managers, nutritionists, artists.

I agree that many Florida residents are at poverty level and getting welfare. However, during 40 years of life in America I observed that people on welfare live better than we lived in the Soviet Union.

We have many people on welfare in our area in Queens. They have free apartments, free medical help, food stamps. Many of them have home attendants who cook for them, clean apartments, do laundries, go with them to stores or for walks.

These people in our area are very happy.

I have only to add three important points here:

1. None of them use drugs.

2. None of them worked in the USA (they came in the country at old age). I don’t believe that it is fair to give them benefits that Americans who worked here all their lives don’t have.

3. The system that allows more people to be on welfare than to work is not capitalism.

Carl also wrote: “The right to vote here is an illusion of democracy. The capitalist megacorps and megabanks run everything and are creating subsistence living here. Your country’s slogan “all power to the workers” sounds good to me. Of course no communist country has initiated that part of change and power switch.”

I was extremely surprised that Carl said: “Your country’s slogan “all power to the workers” sounds good to me” (Carl knows that I was born and lived in the USSR).

How long can people deny facts? Does not everyone know that promise is not a reality? Don’t you remember: “Read my lips” or “You can keep your plan”?

There was never “all power to the workers” in the Soviet Union. It would be very bad if it was because when the USSR was born majority of population were peasants.

A very small group of people seized power and for many years terrorized population of the country. Millions of innocent people were executed and died in Stalags. You can read about it HERE.

I am sure that you also know about repressions in China and Cuba.

Now about “megacorps and megabanks run everything and are creating subsistence living here.”

Are not large and small corporations creating millions of jobs? Are not many people on welfare live on money these corporations pay in taxes? Are not millions of people who invested their money in Microsoft, IBM, Google, Facebook and many other corporations became rich?

I don’t believe that capitalism is a perfect system but I don’t know a better system. I don’t believe that we have a capitalistic system in America today. I think that we have a terrible hybrid of capitalism and socialism and this system leads the country in the wrong direction.

I don’t believe that America is a perfect country. It has racists of all colors, some corrupt and incompetent leaders, gangs, drug addicts, haters of police and the country, many people who want to have everything without working hard to get it.

However, I am sure that every system can be improved and that people of each country can have better lives if they choose and support good leaders and make sure that all elected officials do what is good for the country.

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15 thoughts on “America and capitalism (facts and thoughts)

  1. Dear JF,

    I have to join in this conversation. I don’t believe anyone would say that our country is bad. Notice I did not say that capitalism is bad. Both country and capitalism are entities. Entities, or systems, created by people to achieve certain ends. Along the way there may be things about it that are good or bad that may need to be adjusted. The goals may not be fully achieved, and may need to be adjusted, too.

    From what I have read, here in South Florida, many of these million-dollar plus condos (I said the same thing in my comment to you previously) are being bought by people outside of the country – which is fine (Carl said this,too) .

    When you write that many of the people that you know for the past 13 years have rented from Americans, I have no reason to doubt this – but I have reason to believe that you are not renting a million-dollar plus condo. Now I have no reason to press you on this point – just that I am in agreement with Carl that the average person cannot afford even a modest condo a mile away from the beach in these times.

    I also have no doubts that people here in America who are getting welfare may be living better.
    than those in the Soviet Union that you knew during your time there. That’s great. That’s what makes the United States a great country, and not a repressive one like the Soviet Union. we’re doing our job.

    I think basically, we all agree. We’re just saying it from different perspectives.

    I’m glad to read that that the people you know on welfare are also not on drugs. However, though they may not have worked in the United States and have come here at an older age, so – big deal – a few elderly people live out the rest of their lives free in this free country. A little bit of charity goes a long way. Why are we so cheap!

    You stated “A system that allows more people to be on welfare to work is not capitalism.” Please read the following to understand the situation today a little bit better –
    http://blogs.rgj.com/factchecker/2013/12/07/are-more-people-on-welfare-than-working-full-time/

    Your statement is not true – welfare numbers lie – in a single household receiving welfare there may have 6 people living in that house, and all 6 are counted as welfare recipients. Furthermore, these recipients usually are teenagers and children – obviously not part of the work force.

    Every country needs to have social policies to address the needs of the country. Poverty needs to be addressed, enough food for the citizens needs to be addressed, jobs need to be addressed, education, water, roads, and the like. Corporations provide products. Government provides oversight, rules, and the means to achieve the needs of citizens. The two are very distinct. Some social policies can be viewed as “not capitalistic” or “socialistic” – but I suggest that those people who are using labels are using them as slanderous criticisms rather than neutral descriptions. They are social programs.

    It is not a question of whether a policy is capitalistic or socialistic – it is a question of what do the citizens of this country need? What does the country need to achieve its ends?

    I will stop at this point because if I go further, I may start talking about politics. And I really want to end this on a human note.

    Randy

    • Dear Randy, I was going to answer your comments to my earlier post anyway.
      Now you added more to be addressed.
      You misunderstood me. I said that my wife and I were renting from Americans and that
      more than 500 people we know bought here apartments (for $200,000 – 350,000).
      Many of then also have houses or apartments in Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, New Jersey.

      You said: “the average person cannot afford even a modest condo a mile away from the beach”.

      Wrong! For 4 years we rented a $200,000 apartment from a Cuban, who drives big trucks.
      He lives with his wife in a nice house near Miami.

      I mentioned in both posts occupations of people who we know.They live in Hollywood on both
      sides of S.Ocean Drive (on the beach or very close to it).

      I’ll answer your other comments soon. Best to you!

  2. I agree. Also, i personally doubt that any system that involves humans will avoid corruption, greed and the like. We just have to continually strive for the best ☺

    • Exactly! The book “Culture and Political Psychology” shows that there will
      always be groups and individuals against any system and there will be people
      who will try to live well at the expense of others.

      • I was watching a documentary that estimated 1 in 100 (i think) of the population are clinically psychopaths. They dont mean murderers, but people with diminished empathy and remorse, antisocial behavior, and lack of inhibition. With such a percentage, the existence of groups that rebel against the common good is a given. 😡

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