What I hate about capitalism
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08-06-2013, 01:36 AM
What I hate about capitalism
Don't get me wrong. I'm not advocating for communism. I'm just saying capitalism has it's flaws.


I was just browsing the supermarket shelves today and thought I'd post about this since I've been noticing allot of it over the years.

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For those of you who don't live in Australia - Woolworths and Coles are the 2 major supermarket chains in Australia. Basically if you want to sell your products to the general public you need to go through their supermarkets. You need to rent shelf space. Shelves at eye level cost more than shelves at the top or bottom. On top of this the supermarket wants at least 30% of the sale price or it's not worth their time.

So Woolworths (also Coles) is now manufacturing their own generic food products and shelving it next to their "competition" at lower prices.

Woolworths is a morally bankrupt/socially irresponsible company anyway - given that they are major shareholders in Australian gambling businesses.

So my point I guess, I hate the way big business is fucking over other big business and all business is on the way to being swallowed by a huge global monopoly. In the meantime we are all getting shafted by big business.

Good luck to anyone trying to start a business in general consumer goods market. Rolleyes Dodgy

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08-06-2013, 01:48 AM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
You live in Australia. People from countries like mine where we have to complain about not having anything would kill to be there and complain about supermarkets xD

Joke aside though, do you really have problems starting businesses in Australia? Sure, capitalism is bad, but I would guess that it wouldn't "show" as much in countries like yours. But then again, I would also guess that since you live in paradise, it's only natural to notice those little bad things. This is not irony and I'm not trying to mock you, honestly.

Man I wish I lived there.

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08-06-2013, 01:54 AM (This post was last modified: 08-06-2013 01:58 AM by DeepThought.)
RE: What I hate about capitalism
(08-06-2013 01:48 AM)undergroundp Wrote:  You live in Australia. People from countries like mine where we have to complain about not having anything would kill to be there and complain about supermarkets xD

Joke aside though, do you really have problems starting businesses in Australia? Sure, capitalism is bad, but I would guess that it wouldn't "show" as much in countries like yours. But then again, I would also guess that since you live in paradise, it's only natural to notice those little bad things. This is not irony and I'm not trying to mock you, honestly.

Man I wish I lived there.

You might see this problem as small, but try and think beyond the scope of my example and try seeing the bigger picture. This stuff affects everyone everywhere.

What are you complaining about. Poor person with a computer and internet connection?

Try projecting into the future where things are headed instead of thinking one day ahead.

“Forget Jesus, the stars died so you could be born.” - Lawrence M. Krauss
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08-06-2013, 02:01 AM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
Luckily, I live in a country where an internet connection costs much less than the food I need for a week.

I'm not saying the problem is small. I'm saying that it's surprising that you notice capitalism because of this example.

I'm poor though, it's true. Judging by the fact that my computer is old, it's not like I have the money to buy one every 5 years, plus the fact that I survive because I live with my boyfriend and he helps me, plus the fact that charity is helping my family because we owe money and we are in the verge of losing our house. I used to have money, me and my family, but if the government asks for money you don't have and you stop being paid because your country is in a financial crisis, you become poor in seconds.

Now, ok. I may have a computer, an internet connection and a place to live, but that doesn't mean I have money. I know capitalism affects everyone, trust me, I feel it every single day.

Many verses are like silver threads
tied on the chimes of the stars-
if you pull them,
a silver peal makes the horizon vibrate.
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08-06-2013, 03:24 AM (This post was last modified: 08-06-2013 03:35 AM by DeepThought.)
RE: What I hate about capitalism
(08-06-2013 02:01 AM)undergroundp Wrote:  I'm not saying the problem is small. I'm saying that it's surprising that you notice capitalism because of this example.

Well, I picked this because it seemed like a solid example that was easy to document. I just snapped a pic on my phone and uploaded it.

It's an example of creeping monopolisation that everyone can relate too. I'm also interested in seeing a few different perspectives from different people around the world.

“Forget Jesus, the stars died so you could be born.” - Lawrence M. Krauss
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08-06-2013, 04:36 AM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
I thought you had a beef with capitalism? Monopolies aren't a phenomenon of capitalism or the free markets it creates. Monopolies are established by lobbying or bribing legislators.

In a true free market, if the only two grocers in your area decide to collude to keep prices high, you can simply start a third grocery and compete with them. You'll need a building, stock, employees, office equipment, insurance and advertising... which are all costs that they must incur as well. And yeah, since they're larger, they get better pricing than you but they're also jacking up the price on their goods so there's a larger spread for you to work with between your cost and their sales price. So you open up and sell at the lowest profit you can. After a while, your business will increase and theirs will decrease. They'll have to go down on their prices to stay competitive but you'll still be there and you will create some niche or innovation within your stores that will make customers want to visit you instead of them even if your prices are now equal with what they've lowered theirs to to compete. In the end, now there are three choices of grocers and more choice is always better for the consumer.

Now... in a statist market where the government regulates trade, things are different. The two colluding grocers have also lobbied the state for licensure requirements for a lot of the goods you plan to sell. This means you'll have to pay higher salaries to already trained and licensed staff or you'll have to foot the bill to have untrained staff go to training and state testing. Not to mention, the staff who don't need to be licensed or even, skilled, must be paid a higher salary as a result of minimum wage laws. Also, the "big two" grocers have lobbied for price controls on milk, so, while you'll have to pay a much higher price for milk than they do, you won't be able to sell it at a higher price because there's a cap on that... which means you'll likely have to sell milk at a loss until your buying volume is high enough or you'll simple have to be a grocer who doesn't sell milk. Eggs too, probably. Oh and a startup cost I forgot is a fire alarm system. Your insurance will require some sort of fire protection system but the state will require a comprehensive system that well exceeds reasonable safety requirements and, of course, costs thousands of dollars more to install. And then there are fees to submit your fire alarm plans, permit fees to be paid for the privilege of owning that extravagant system and yearly inspection fees. ← I no little about the grocery business but I spent about 17 years selling, installing, servicing and inspecting those fire alarms.

All told, all of the legislation the "big two" got passed coupled with all the other regulatory compliance costs required by the state have overshot your start up budget by a few hundred thousand dollars so... sorry. You don't get to open a grocery and compete with the monopoly. And that's exactly why they spent those millions of dollars lobbying the state for alleged safety regulations... so that they wouldn't have to actually compete in a free market with harder working, more innovative entrepreneurs. And in the end, there is less consumer choice, higher prices on the shelf and lower levels of service at the register.

As said above, I don't know much about the grocery business but I have owned and managed a number of different companies in various industries and trades. Regulatory compliance costs are often times far too high for new start ups to even start up and they're often too high for smaller businesses to maintain and stay in business.

I don't know about Australia but here in the US and Canada, in the largest metropolitan areas such as New York and Toronto (I think)... the yearly license fees for a cab company are ~ $200,000.00. That's just for the privilege of being a cab company. That doesn't include the costs of owning cabs, servicing them, state registration and inspection of them, paying drivers, marketing, etc. How many would be competitors do you think that cost has kept out of the market? A lot, I'm sure. The few smaller, independent cab drivers in New York have to take out a loan to pay that fee and then work seven days a week, 12+ hours a day just to pay it off and have enough left to maintain their cabs and pay a few bills.

And again, that's exactly how the largest cab companies wanted it.

You were lamenting fascism, not capitalism. No

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08-06-2013, 04:41 AM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
One more thing. And I promise not to labor the point...

If a monopoly were to occur in a true free market, it would be because it provided such wonderful goods/services and prices and customer service that no one traded with its competitors. But if it ever started to fail in those areas, some motivated individual or group of individuals would step into the market and capitalize on its failings.

Okay, two more things... Australia is actually rated lower than the US in the area of government regulation. So ultimately, you live in a little bit freer marketplace than I.

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08-06-2013, 07:53 AM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
(08-06-2013 04:41 AM)bbeljefe Wrote:  One more thing. And I promise not to labor the point...

If a monopoly were to occur in a true free market, it would be because it provided such wonderful goods/services and prices and customer service that no one traded with its competitors. But if it ever started to fail in those areas, some motivated individual or group of individuals would step into the market and capitalize on its failings.

Okay, two more things... Australia is actually rated lower than the US in the area of government regulation. So ultimately, you live in a little bit freer marketplace than I.

Capitalism leads directly to Monopoly unless it is legislated to prevent such. Capitalism is like Darwinism on steroids and moves incredibly fast so your nonsense about "it's the governments fault monopolies happen" is just turning a blind eye to history. Lets just look at American history at the turn of the last century 1899-1900. Little to no government regulation of business and an entire class of Capitalist Robber-Barons running every industry with massive monopolies. It wasn't until Teddy Roosevelt began actually enforcing the Sherman Anti-trust Act that there even was a "free market" as you describe it.

You Anarchists and your illusions of some happy perfect world where the government leaves everyone alone and we can all jerk off to statues of Ayn Rand always ignore the fact that any time businesses are left to their own devices they become as bad or sometimes even worse than slavery. You really think BP would have lifted a finger to clean up that oil spill in the gulf if the US government hadn't leaned on them to do it?

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08-06-2013, 01:20 PM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
(08-06-2013 07:53 AM)Revenant77x Wrote:  Capitalism leads directly to Monopoly unless it is legislated to prevent such. Capitalism is like Darwinism on steroids and moves incredibly fast so your nonsense about "it's the governments fault monopolies happen" is just turning a blind eye to history. Lets just look at American history at the turn of the last century 1899-1900. Little to no government regulation of business and an entire class of Capitalist Robber-Barons running every industry with massive monopolies. It wasn't until Teddy Roosevelt began actually enforcing the Sherman Anti-trust Act that there even was a "free market" as you describe it.

You Anarchists and your illusions of some happy perfect world where the government leaves everyone alone and we can all jerk off to statues of Ayn Rand always ignore the fact that any time businesses are left to their own devices they become as bad or sometimes even worse than slavery. You really think BP would have lifted a finger to clean up that oil spill in the gulf if the US government hadn't leaned on them to do it?

I'd have expected less of a visceral attack than that from you, brother.

Less regulation isn't none.

Did you know that the state used to catch run away slaves?

Did you know that the state provided money for and sanctioned the slave like working conditions on the US rail system?

Did you know that Cornelius Vanderbilt and Thomas Gibbons broke the law when they opened a ferry company and offered lower fares than Aaron Ogden's state granted monopoly on ferry service?

Did you know that John Rockefeller built an oil pipeline and used it to bargain down rail system rates for all train users?

Did you know that Rockefeller's Standard oil company captured 90% of the petroleum business not through state privilege but because he produced safe kerosene? At the time, most kerosene produced was highly unstable and tended to explode unexpectedly. Standard Oil's alleged monopoly was nothing more than a capitalist offering a safer product to consumers.

I won't address the Ayn rand insult...

As BP goes, I know for a fact that the government limited BP's total liability to $75 million in the cleanup of any potential spills in a 1990 act passed after the Exxon Valdez event. Why do you think there was such to do about it in congress after the Gulf spill? Because congress was busy trying to find loopholes and pass ex-post facto legislation that wouldn't expose this idiocy from the past.

The state isn't there to help you. There are people who run the state and there is you. They care less about you than the guy who sells pizza down the street cares about you. He has to ask for your business.... they don't.

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08-06-2013, 02:13 PM
RE: What I hate about capitalism
(08-06-2013 01:20 PM)bbeljefe Wrote:  
(08-06-2013 07:53 AM)Revenant77x Wrote:  Capitalism leads directly to Monopoly unless it is legislated to prevent such. Capitalism is like Darwinism on steroids and moves incredibly fast so your nonsense about "it's the governments fault monopolies happen" is just turning a blind eye to history. Lets just look at American history at the turn of the last century 1899-1900. Little to no government regulation of business and an entire class of Capitalist Robber-Barons running every industry with massive monopolies. It wasn't until Teddy Roosevelt began actually enforcing the Sherman Anti-trust Act that there even was a "free market" as you describe it.

You Anarchists and your illusions of some happy perfect world where the government leaves everyone alone and we can all jerk off to statues of Ayn Rand always ignore the fact that any time businesses are left to their own devices they become as bad or sometimes even worse than slavery. You really think BP would have lifted a finger to clean up that oil spill in the gulf if the US government hadn't leaned on them to do it?

I'd have expected less of a visceral attack than that from you, brother.

Less regulation isn't none.

Did you know that the state used to catch run away slaves?

Did you know that the state provided money for and sanctioned the slave like working conditions on the US rail system?

Did you know that Cornelius Vanderbilt and Thomas Gibbons broke the law when they opened a ferry company and offered lower fares than Aaron Ogden's state granted monopoly on ferry service?

Did you know that John Rockefeller built an oil pipeline and used it to bargain down rail system rates for all train users?

Did you know that Rockefeller's Standard oil company captured 90% of the petroleum business not through state privilege but because he produced safe kerosene? At the time, most kerosene produced was highly unstable and tended to explode unexpectedly. Standard Oil's alleged monopoly was nothing more than a capitalist offering a safer product to consumers.

I won't address the Ayn rand insult...

As BP goes, I know for a fact that the government limited BP's total liability to $75 million in the cleanup of any potential spills in a 1990 act passed after the Exxon Valdez event. Why do you think there was such to do about it in congress after the Gulf spill? Because congress was busy trying to find loopholes and pass ex-post facto legislation that wouldn't expose this idiocy from the past.

The state isn't there to help you. There are people who run the state and there is you. They care less about you than the guy who sells pizza down the street cares about you. He has to ask for your business.... they don't.

The Ayn Rand thing was out of line, and was not really directed at you since you're not one of that cult (though a good portion of extreme Libertarian/anarchists are) so I apologise and withdraw it since it adds nothing to the conversation and was petty.

As to your other points I didn't claim that all government is great all the time. I'm not a huge fan of a lot of things the government does on my and your behalf (regardless of your wanting them to do so the fact remains that they are doing so in your name) I still stand by my main point that you skipped over Unregulated Capitalism is one of the more evil inventions of mankind. It leads to Monolithic structures that prevent competition and exploit a now dependant base (Your Rockefeller for instance did not have the Public's best interests at heart over his railroad stunt he was just breaking the will of a competitor).

In the end Governments are accountable to their people but who are Giant Multinationals accountable to? Their Shareholders, their board of directors? Your main stance is you believe that government is held by force (and I'm not arguing the point now) why do you believe that Corporations that are quickly moving to become to big to control (having already become to big to fail) will be any less likely to use said force to further their aims?

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