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Old July 7th, 2018, 10:32 PM   #11
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There were strong labor unions in the US. However, a high percentage of workers weren't unionized until the 1930s and union numbers have been declining for the last 50 years or so.

There was/is the radical IWW Industrial Workers of the World, but it never organized much. There also were a fairly small percentage of unions that were Soviet Communist controlled or influenced.

Workers in the US never were attracted to Socialism or Marxism. You might ask why European workers bought that garbage.

There wasn't much of a landed nobility in the US. The landed gentry was partially destroyed by the Civil War and Mexican American War.

There were more yeoman farmers in the US than tenant farmers or slaves.
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Old July 8th, 2018, 12:24 AM   #12
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Workers in the US never were attracted to Socialism or Marxism. You might ask why European workers bought that garbage.
Maybe it sounds a bit like a wishful thinking, but isn't it true that the American spirit is founded on self-reliance, entrepeneurship and freedom? Then how can you mix this with an ideology like Marxist Socialism which basically oppresses the free and the brave and protects slave-minded idiots?

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Old July 8th, 2018, 01:30 AM   #13
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Maybe it sounds a bit like a wishful thinking, but isn't it true that the American spirit is founded on self-reliance, entrepeneurship and freedom? Then how can you mix this with an ideology like Socialism which basically oppresses the free and the brave and protects slave-minded idiots?
The U.S. was partially founded on self-reliance, entrepreneurship, and freedom. It was also founded on enslaving people and then subjecting the slave's descendants to segregation for a century after that ended. So Americans has had no problem oppressing people despite what the Pledge of Allegiance says. Maybe Americans should stop pretending America is holier than Thou and look at America's "garbage" before they start ridiculing other countries.
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Old July 8th, 2018, 02:17 AM   #14
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The U.S. was partially founded on self-reliance, entrepreneurship, and freedom. It was also founded on enslaving people and then subjecting the slave's descendants to segregation for a century after that ended. So Americans has had no problem oppressing people despite what the Pledge of Allegiance says. Maybe Americans should stop pretending America is holier than Thou and look at America's "garbage" before they start ridiculing other countries.
No offence but this doesn't deal a little with what I said. Anyway the fact that you are self-reliant and entrepeunerial may of course make you much more distant from being "holier than Thou" since obsession for holyness and other slave-morality garbage matter for slave-minded idiots who tend to believe in imposed economic equality and not in freedom. There's a master mentality which focuses on being free and brave and there's a slave morality which values more being "holy" and which fits with the average herd (according to which you are obliged to be peaceful, loving, and other blablabla). One doesn't need to read Nietzsche to understand that. Maybe I'm writing too much in extremes but what I want to say is that I think that being a great nation doesn't deal a little with being truely "holier than thou" (especially according to Marxist socialist philosophy). I'm franlky glad that most socialist, fascist and marxist and many other people rate America and Americans as an "inferior nation" since...it's a matter of point of views coherently according to each own's moral standards. Of course I don't justify slavery and other very bad things America did in its history, and I would rate other nations like Norwey and Germany as being better than the U.S. But anyway my post was an hypotesis about American workers actually so slavery and Indian's genocide weren't concerned at all. End of OT.

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Old July 8th, 2018, 05:00 AM   #15
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No offence but this doesn't deal a little with what I said. Anyway the fact that you are self-reliant and entrepeunerial may of course make you much more distant from being "holier than Thou" since obsession for holyness and other slave-morality garbage matter for slave-minded idiots who tend to believe in imposed economic equality and not in freedom. There's a master mentality which focuses on being free and brave and there's a slave morality which values more being "holy" and which fits with the average herd (according to which you are obliged to be peaceful, loving, and other blablabla). One doesn't need to read Nietzsche to understand that. Maybe I'm writing too much in extremes but what I want to say is that I think that being a great nation doesn't deal a little with being truely "holier than thou" (especially according to Marxist socialist philosophy). I'm franlky glad that most socialist, fascist and marxist and many other people rate America and Americans as an "inferior nation" since...it's a matter of point of views coherently according to each own's moral standards. Of course I don't justify slavery and other very bad things America did in its history, and I would rate other nations like Norwey and Germany as being better than the U.S. But anyway my post was an hypotesis about American workers actually so slavery and Indian's genocide weren't concerned at all. End of OT.
I wasn't speaking of you, I was speaking to the American whose post you quoted and his comments about European's "garbage." Sorry if I wasn't clear about what I was responding to.

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Old July 8th, 2018, 05:53 AM   #16

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Originally Posted by betgo View Post
There were strong labor unions in the US. However, a high percentage of workers weren't unionized until the 1930s and union numbers have been declining for the last 50 years or so.

There was/is the radical IWW Industrial Workers of the World, but it never organized much. There also were a fairly small percentage of unions that were Soviet Communist controlled or influenced.

Workers in the US never were attracted to Socialism or Marxism. You might ask why European workers bought that garbage.

There wasn't much of a landed nobility in the US. The landed gentry was partially destroyed by the Civil War and Mexican American War.

There were more yeoman farmers in the US than tenant farmers or slaves.

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Originally Posted by Lm1985 View Post
Maybe it sounds a bit like a wishful thinking, but isn't it true that the American spirit is founded on self-reliance, entrepeneurship and freedom? Then how can you mix this with an ideology like Marxist Socialism which basically oppresses the free and the brave and protects slave-minded idiots?
Marx was influenced by Socialism not the other way round.

The early Corresponding Societies (UK), the French theorists such as Saint-Simon etc. Also Paine, Owens, Spence and then especially the early trade unions (UK) wanted better working conditions for the masses of men, women and child labourers, the majority of the people. The Chartists (UK 1838-1848) wanted the extension of suffrage to all male adults. Was this unreasonable of them?

People, including children, were literally being worked to death. Why do you consider this early socialism to be 'garbage' and 'oppression'?
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Old July 8th, 2018, 08:21 AM   #17
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Marx was influenced by Socialism not the other way round.

The early Corresponding Societies (UK), the French theorists such as Saint-Simon etc. Also Paine, Owens, Spence and then especially the early trade unions (UK) wanted better working conditions for the masses of men, women and child labourers, the majority of the people. The Chartists (UK 1838-1848) wanted the extension of suffrage to all male adults. Was this unreasonable of them?

People, including children, were literally being worked to death. Why do you consider this early socialism to be 'garbage' and 'oppression'?
I just mean that US workers did not see socialism as a solution for them. Everyone knows socialism and Marxism did not work.

I am not sure how the Chartists and extension of suffrage were socialism.
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Old July 8th, 2018, 12:43 PM   #18
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Marx was influenced by Socialism not the other way round.

The early Corresponding Societies (UK), the French theorists such as Saint-Simon etc. Also Paine, Owens, Spence and then especially the early trade unions (UK) wanted better working conditions for the masses of men, women and child labourers, the majority of the people. The Chartists (UK 1838-1848) wanted the extension of suffrage to all male adults. Was this unreasonable of them?

People, including children, were literally being worked to death. Why do you consider this early socialism to be 'garbage' and 'oppression'?
I suspect all these authors and trade-unions you're putting together in one group had huge differences between themselves; Saint Simon, a sort of Christian-socialist who aimed to a new human collectivist redemption, was no Paine, an anti-monopolies thinker, and aiming to a socialist society is not at all the same thing as aiming to improve working class conditions. Don't forget there are differences even today between communist trade-unions and progressive/social-democrat ones and catholic ones. Wanting better (not beastly at least) life conditions for 19th century workers was of course nothing wrong (if you know how to put this in practise, wether you're a trade-union leader or a borgeois intellectual coming from left-wing Hegelian philosophy...), the problem with socialism is that, since the time of Buonarroti and Babeuf, it's basically a totalitarian ideology who wants to impose an authoritarian and/or collective will to all members of mankind, it despises human individual rights which were at the core of the American Declaration of Indipendence and modern concept of liberty (which Constant compared with the ancient one) as bourgeois trivialities; you can read how this totalitarian will was rooted in 18th century philosophers if you consider Isaiah Berlin's and, most of all, Jacob Talmon's interpretations of history of political ideals since the French revolution.
Of course, by Socialism, I do not intend all the battles, the heroic fights, the workers of all the world had to make to improve their conditions and participate to the advantages of a capitalistic/industrial society, so I won't consider as "socialist" movements such as the old Labour or German social-democrats (who actually fought for better wages or 8 hours per day, this made European democracies enough good both in terms of freedom and economic justice, during the 20th century).
It sounds strange but one who sincerely wants to improve working-class conditions can be a classic-liberal like Einaudi or Ropke and not necessarily a communist.

Last edited by Lm1985; July 8th, 2018 at 01:03 PM.
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Old July 9th, 2018, 10:11 AM   #19

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I just mean that US workers did not see socialism as a solution for them. Everyone knows socialism and Marxism did not work.

I am not sure how the Chartists and extension of suffrage were socialism.
Chartism was class struggle, especially in the 'physical force' industrial districts. The 1842 General Strike for example

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I suspect all these authors and trade-unions you're putting together in one group had huge differences between themselves; Saint Simon, a sort of Christian-socialist who aimed to a new human collectivist redemption, was no Paine, an anti-monopolies thinker, and aiming to a socialist society is not at all the same thing as aiming to improve working class conditions. Don't forget there are differences even today between communist trade-unions and progressive/social-democrat ones and catholic ones.
Wanting better (not beastly at least) life conditions for 19th century workers was of course nothing wrong (if you know how to put this in practise, wether you're a trade-union leader or a borgeois intellectual coming from left-wing Hegelian philosophy...), the problem with socialism is that, since the time of Buonarroti and Babeuf, it's basically a totalitarian ideology who wants to impose an authoritarian and/or collective will to all members of mankind, it despises human individual rights which were at the core of the American Declaration of Indipendence and modern concept of liberty (which Constant compared with the ancient one) as bourgeois trivialities; you can read how this totalitarian will was rooted in 18th century philosophers if you consider Isaiah Berlin's and, most of all, Jacob Talmon's interpretations of history of political ideals since the French revolution.
Of course, by Socialism, I do not intend all the battles, the heroic fights, the workers of all the world had to make to improve their conditions and participate to the advantages of a capitalistic/industrial society, so I won't consider as "socialist" movements such as the old Labour or German social-democrats (who actually fought for better wages or 8 hours per day, this made European democracies enough good both in terms of freedom and economic justice, during the 20th century).
It sounds strange but one who sincerely wants to improve working-class conditions can be a classic-liberal like Einaudi or Ropke and not necessarily a communist.
Your first paragraph is interesting but the rest are your political opinions
I thought the OP question was about the 19th century, industrialisation and the differences between the 'development' of socialism in Europe and the USA

PS. Neither of you answered my question
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Old July 10th, 2018, 01:06 AM   #20
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Your first paragraph is interesting but the rest are your political opinions
PS. Neither of you answered my question
According to dictionary, socialism is a theory according to which the means of production, distribution and exchange should be owned by the community instead of private individuals. The record of history is pretty clear: all those countries who made, or better to say tried to put in practise these theories, had these traits as a consequence: means of production were basically state-owned by an elite, economy didn't run as well as in capitalist one (to say the least), social rights (free press, freedom of expression) were abolished, since when you're the only one running an economy you should brainwash and indoctrinate the population according to your politics and plans (see Von Hayek's The Road to Serfdom on state-economic planning and state-monopolization and its consequence on the moral qualities of the ruling elite). Theorically, collectively owned means of production may sound good or not to someone according to his own attitude and opinion (personally, I believe private property is something holy and think that human beings generally act as a sheepy herd when put together, so I'm among those who don't like it); put in practise, this theory means nomenklatura and abolition of freedom.
Did scandinavian social-democracies, Labourist Britain during Attlee's government, social-democrats like Willy Brandt, realize socialism as the dictionary's classic definition defines it? The answer is evidently no. I may also add that there are a lot of aspects of socialist programs which helped to improve living standards and are considered part of European common sense (free healthcare, free education, ecc..). Marx's critique of capitalism should not be etiquetted as rubbish, since even today there are many scholars who recognize some positive aspects of his work.
Is it normal that some former citizens of socialist countries have a sort of nostalgia for socialism? Sure, especially when their countries passed from a state owned economy to an economy basically ruled by greedy oligarchs and corrupted politicians (the worst forms of capitalism); during socialism, you had free helthcare, free education, and everybody had a job....but, these ups are not equal to the disadvantages of living in a socialist state (who are also articularly apt to adopt a good vs evil attitude toward anyone who disagrees from them).
Of course everything I say is an opinion of mine, it couldn't but be like that, since history is made "not of facts, but out of interpretations" (F. Nitezsche); the ones who pretend to possess objective truth are those who will try to impose a totalitarian society (be it ruled by a nomenklatura, or people's will, or God's will, or whatever), just like the intelellectuals in the tradition of "totalitarian" democracy I named in the former message, and among these there are the supporters of socialist societies.
Party's dictatorship was NOT a deviation from the true original socialist message, it was a natural consequence supported by the anti-individualist forma mentis of 19th century socialist thinkers. So, to answer your question, as a final conclusion of my arguments I would say socialism was mostly garbage since the beginning.

P.S.: generally talking class struggle like that made by chartists is not an exclusive trait of socialism or of socialist culture (as I intend it), even for a radical liberal supporter of capitalism like Gobetti it was a mean to improve the working-class maturity.

Last edited by Lm1985; July 10th, 2018 at 01:27 AM.
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