This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

Pima County Sheriff: "Loughner May Have Had An Accomplice"

Tyler Durden's picture




 

Salon provides some unpleasant additional information on yesterday's headline news, which many had already suspected: namely that Loughner likely did not act alone. "Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said at a news conference in
Tucson on Saturday that authorities may have a photo of another suspect." Unfortunately, with a nation increasingly on edge, this possibility will likely turn out to be true. We can only hope that other like-minded individuals do not take this event as an escalation signal, and proceed to take vigilante "justice" into their own hands. 

From Salon:

The Arizona sheriff helping investigate the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and others says the gunman may not have acted alone.

Pima County Sheriff Clarence Dupnik said at a news conference in Tucson on Saturday that authorities may have a photo of another suspect.

Dupnik says officials believe a suspect in custody may have come to the grocery store parking lot with another person, and that person was in some way involved.

Dupnik would offer no other information.

People familiar with the investigation have identified the suspected gunman being held as 22-year-old Jared Loughner.

Law enforcement officials also believe Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was the intended target of an armed attack in Tucson. Dupnik said at a Saturday evening news conference that "I don't have information about whether she was the first person shot, but yes, I believe she was the target."

The sheriff said Giffords was shot once in the head, and 18 other people were shot. Six are dead.

 

- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Sun, 01/09/2011 - 04:49 | 861333 tetrahedron
tetrahedron's picture

Will you psychopaths please stop using fresh corpses as a vehicle for your personal political gripes, yea? The dude was a fucking lunatic.

 

ZOMG! He likes silver and gold, libertarians are evil. ZOMG SARAH PALIN says she was bad, SARAH PALIN killed her. ZOMG KOS says target Gifford, it must be the liberals.

 

Stop projecting your rotten psychoses all over the internet.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 06:04 | 861394 jeff montanye
jeff montanye's picture

no.  the crucial point is not what ideal state of being will we magically transform into existence, but in what direction should the u.s.a. move, given its current condition.  and more power to the corporations and the rich and their captive government is not it.  

in just the last ten years, constitutional verities such as freedom from imprisonment without trial, warrantless wiretapping, executive order assassination, etc. have been destroyed by government policy.  corporations control the political system to the great detriment of individual citizens.  

freedom from this government is what is needed combined with a far, far different orientation for the officials elected.  ron paul and russ feingold.  not bush and obama.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 07:18 | 861450 gwar5
gwar5's picture

unfettered government leads to totalitarianism

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 08:31 | 861516 Batty Koda
Batty Koda's picture

A few problems with that;

We don't know what the government is up to so can't make an informed voting decision.

The media tells people who to vote for.

The power elite will corrupt anybody running for office before they are even elected, through "campaign donations", blackmail and the like.

And your final point about moving to another country. You can move wherever you like but you'll still be controlled by the anglo-american world empire. There is no escape.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 08:39 | 861527 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

You are making consistent points IMO, you just do not appear to be willing to go to their logical conclusion, where the inconsistencies really show.

Fact is, if you think that the current model of democracy is beyond repair and cannot be repaired "from the inside", then you have given up any pretense of freedom. You will have to act against the wishes of hundreds of millions of people. It does not get any more unfree than that ...

Which wishes may be stupid and may be manipulated - but do you really claim that freedom does not apply to stupid and manipulated people? Should their freedom instead be practiced "on their behalf" by a well-informed minority like yourself?

Don't you see how full of contraditions such a position is?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 09:10 | 861557 Batty Koda
Batty Koda's picture

My hope is that the free flow of information through the internet will allow people to escape the coma induced by the MSM. If nearly everybody accepted that 9/11 was engineered by anglo-american empire in order to start the never ending "war on terror" then maybe things would change.

Polarising people towards two political parties that are virtually identical is the elites main weapon for controlling the public.We need to look past the politicians and at the power elite instead.

Every day more and more people realise that they have been kept in the dark all their lives, I think there will be a tipping point when enough people are "awake".

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 09:46 | 861598 TuesdayBen
TuesdayBen's picture

The days of the 'free flow of info on the internet' may be numbered. 

See: http://www.postchronicle.com/news/original/article_212342332.shtml

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:17 | 861638 tmosley
tmosley's picture

I love how your idea of "freedom" is premised around the existence of an institution which, by virtue of its very existence, MUST steal to exist.  

Further, there is a difference between a democracy (which is mob rule and tyranny of the majority), and a republic.  We do NOT have a democracy, for that very reason.  The laws of the Republic exist to prevent minorities from being trampled, to prevent two wolves and a sheep from voting on who to eat that night.  It is the REPUBLIC that has been corrupted.  

I mean Christ, what the fuck is wrong with you?  You don't understand the very foundation of America!  From the beginning it was meant to be ruled by an enlightened minority, called "representatives".  The only democracy we get is in choosing those representatives.  The problem is that those representatives have exceeded their mandate by appointing PERMANENT, UNELECTED bureaucrats to enforce and CREATE numerous laws and regulations which carry the force of law.  THAT is where the problem has come from.

The bureaucracy is expanding, to meet the needs of the expanding bureaucracy.  And the bill goes to us, as does the burden of dealing with them.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:54 | 861683 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

The laws of the Republic exist to prevent minorities from being trampled,

Not quite true, a sufficient majority can amend or even replace the Constitution.

Also, you know that the Constitution was written by a handful of rich slave owners, right? While they were certainly bright and wise individuals (if we had a time machine to bring them here the founding fathers would probably be considered unelectable far-left progressives today), they are not exactly the personal role models for protecting minorities, to put it mildly.

The problem is that those representatives have exceeded their mandate by appointing PERMANENT, UNELECTED bureaucrats to enforce and CREATE numerous laws and regulations which carry the force of law. [...]

What's your problem? You still have the right to go to the polls every few years and elect representatives who have the power to unseat bureaucrats or change laws at the flip of a switch in essence.

FYI, they even have the power to dilute (read: marginalize) the Supreme Court, if they so wish. A sufficiently strong super-majority even has the power to change the Constitution.

Of course the majority has no wish to do that currently - rightly or wrongly. Who are you to prescribe other people whom to vote on?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:11 | 861740 Max Hunter
Max Hunter's picture

Your comments are just silly.. Do you think our voting really has any impact on our current situation. The reps in Washington are selling us out as quick as we vote them in based on their promises of change.. Give me a break.. It's a fucking sham.. Anything that thinks any differently is beyond help..

I feel this shooting was a tragedy. This is not justice. The person that did this will prove to be crazy and if it weren't politics, he would have latched onto another reason to commit his crimes against our society.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:24 | 861762 tmosley
tmosley's picture

That's a lot of ad hominem. So the constitution is bad because it was written by slaveowners therefore we don't have a republic?

Just what the hell are you trying to say here? It sounds to me like you are obfuscating in order to avoid more critical thinking.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:56 | 861776 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

You are paraphrasing my post and you are misrepresenting what I said. How about acting like a man and quoting me directly and replying to that, just like I did it with the original post?

I am claiming what I said in the post above, it involved minorities and the Republic. You will probably need to read it before replying to it though.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:28 | 861886 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

@More you're right in saying that unfettered "free-markets" wind up inevitably creating "free rackets". Without checks and balances to monetary power, markets simply concentrate wealth and power more and more. It doesn't take a PhD to figure it out: look at what happens out on the street without police, or in the schoolyard without adults. Gangs inevitably and always form and terrorize the majority. And in the case of adults they demand extortion from all legit businesses, run rackets, and impose their own brand of "justice" acting as judge, jury and executioner. Gangs end up becoming the form of government and set all the rules. Like in the good ole days :)

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:43 | 861932 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

The question is, why do libertarians deny this simple reality?

Probably because the only answer would be to give up the "regulation-free markets" dogma - and dogmas are not to be questioned!

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:23 | 862014 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Because they're blinded by ideology. When people want to believe in a high-minded concept strongly enough, they can ignore nearly all reality and selectively filter out anything that contradicts it. Concepts like 'always' and 'never', 'superior' 'inferior', 'good' and 'bad'. All in the eye of the beholder, all relative, never right because reality is grey. 

But we're living in times where some of us are feeling vulnerable and anxious. So they'll demonize in order to feel like at least the enemy is something they can understand and deal with, rather than a complexity full of self-contradiction. It's easier to demonize than to make a decision or even think.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:38 | 862036 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

why do libertarians deny this simple reality?

Many of the Tea Party Libertarians have drifted to this specific niche of libertarianism simply because they hate Democrats, but they've also recently discovered that the modern Republican party is full of shit - so libertarianism seems like their only alternative.  

In reality, though, they haven't thought for one moment about where survival-of-the-fittest, anti-Fed, anarcho capitalism eventually leads. It just sounds cool, it sounds educated and it places them - so they think - outside the box of both parties. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:54 | 862071 harveywalbinger
harveywalbinger's picture

You're either a dimwit or a shill.  The system we have now will lead us to totalitarianism. In fact, we're well on our way...  Google the definition of fascism, moron... 

Libertarianism, in accordance with the Constitution, makes no promise of prosperity, only the promise of opportunity.  Perhaps a coward, such as yourself, would prefer a life of servitude as long as you get some government cheese...

Our political system is a two-headed serpent. Either choice results in debt servitude, be it from perpetual war, or be it from the nanny state... it's all funded by deficit spending.  The two party system is a clever device to distract the lower strata from the all important issue of money (the perpetual harvest of their value/wealth via the fundamentally flawed debt based monetary system).

All other issues are stirred up to distract you away from the fact that you are in servitude to a private bank.
abortion
gay rights
hate crimes
war on drugs
etc...

I REPEAT. All other issues are stirred up to distract you away from the fundamental issue that you are in servitude to a private bank. These are issues that ought to be addressed at the state level as intended in the Constitution.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:06 | 862095 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

The arguments here were about free markets and their inevitable consequences like predatory monopolies.

You need to answer those problems, because, frankly, I do not see a big difference in seeing a big monopoly ruling over us versus a government ruling over us. Except that with the government I at least know that I can vote them out of power every now  and then (to replace them with another set of crooks).

This keeps their greed somewhat in check, compared to the kind of economic control a monopoly can practice.

Translation: your cure seems much worse than the disease.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:18 | 862107 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

your cure seems much worse than the disease.

Perfectly stated. 

Although I'm not entirely certain that I want death by a thousand cuts, or by half as much. It's a tough choice.

---

By the way, you should come work for my company.  I get paid to decimate Republicans all day, and the benefits are not bad either. I hope you're not working for one of my competitors, because I was here first - there's a mother-load of good huntin' here. 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:32 | 862281 Thanatos
Thanatos's picture

Your solution is near.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:34 | 862284 docj
docj's picture

MSNBC?

Mon, 01/10/2011 - 00:52 | 862997 Astute Investor
Astute Investor's picture

By the way, you should come work for my company.  I get paid to decimate Republicans all day, and the benefits are not bad either.

Sounds like a real, value-added job.  Hard to believe that anybody would pay for such shit - only in America!  You obviously don't get paid for the quality of your analysis or conclusions.  99% of what I see you post on ZH is total nonsense.

Mon, 01/10/2011 - 01:43 | 863112 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

Hard to believe that anybody would pay for such shit

Equally difficult to believe that you'd believe it.  

Just because you have absolutely no understanding of how gross profit margins relate to a discussion about price inflation does not mean you need to follow me around with your inferiority complex. 

Mon, 01/10/2011 - 09:58 | 863402 Astute Investor
Astute Investor's picture

Simply repeating something again and again doesn't make it true.  I can't understand why you simply can't accept that you were wrong about the puts and takes of gross profit margins?  I explained it to you ad nauseum by listing the components and a simple example.  Gross profit margins are influenced by three factors (1) Price; (2) Volume; and (3) COGS.  I explained how gross profit margins can increase despite a decline in the unit sale price through higher volume.  Basic supply / demand - lower prices spur higher product demand.  If the increase in unit volume offsets the lower sale price per unit then you will get higher total net sales.  Your statement that higher gross margin is ONLY due to sale prices increasing more than COGS is incorrect.  Please feel free to present an accounting book or an accountant that shows otherwise.

As I posted previously, my comments about coffee prices and your specious statement about gross profit margins were separate and distinct.  My strategy is to examine all of the facts and then arrive at a conclusion.  You seem to prefer to start with a conclusion and datamine for evidence that supports it - there is "no inflation" (Bernanke & Krugman told me so) and higher gross margins at WMT and MCD are "proof" that both companies are only using inflation as an excuse to raise prices and screw the low-end consumer.  The problem with your premise is we agreed that there have been substantial increases in food prices with coffee (+82%) as the primary example.  This cost inflation has to be absorbed by a combination of the processor, wholesaler, retailer or end consumer.  Your thesis that higher consumer prices is the result of "greedy" corporations like WMT & MCD is bunk.  Ever think it could be a constant debasing of the currency and a flawed monetary policy that causes these unintended consequences for the consumer?  I didn't think so.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:28 | 862134 tmosley
tmosley's picture

I see, so you would rather get shot than participate in a boycott.

The absolute worst corporation can't force you to do anything you don't want to do.  The absolute worst government can do quite a bit worse.

Further, MORE monopolies have formed under our centrally planned economy than ever formed under a free market environment.  This SHATTERS your bullshit argument.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:49 | 862189 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

What sophistry.  COmpletely wrong btw.

So a corporation can't outsource your job? Leaving you to in many cases lose ones home?

So a corporation can't tilt the laws so they can put more crap in your food?

Same above for say anything else.  Airbags, Baby cribs. etc

A corporation like the federal reserve (among other corporations) espousing monetarism, turned America from Capitalism to Imperialist monetarism and no one noticed.  That's pretty powerful.

A corporation spends money on Advertising influencing our young.

Why Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity and all other fucktards also work for corporations.  So their corporate job is to influence your mind. 

ROFL it isn't Centrally planned vs free market.

ROFL the monetarist control both.

So you have a fascist corporations acting like themselves in a free market, and fascist centrally planned (yes it is, not communist...our version...not 1920's russia...two separate things) gov't acting in corporations interests.

So if you ask me, your whole point is moot as it misses the bigger question.  Both are expressions of fascism through monetarism.

Free market is a fascist monetarists dream.  Plus it's always been unrealistic.

Centrally planned is a fascist monetarists dream as well.  They centrally plan for who? That's right the corporations.

It's fascism.  They've just got you hoodwinked into believing the same thing is different.  Nope.  It's the same.  You're part of the same.  You aren't thinking out of the box, you're thinking from a different corner.

Wake up.

Fascism, where we are and heading...will give the corporation all the power of a centrally planned gov't.  That's fascism...and in that world...ALL THE BAD THINGS THAT HAPPEN, just about, will be done, by corporations, given the thumbs up from it's fascist gov't.

These are the free marketeers.  These are the Paul Krugmans.  The Barack Obama's. The Ron/Rand Paul's.

That's the reality.  Watch the fascism from almost all sides, unfold.  Because TPTB broke up their fascist thoughts and distributed them amongst just about all the ideologies out there.  Each brand, has it's own brand, of fascism.  The funny thing is, now they can bring each side together under bipartisanship, and enact what? Fascist legislation.

Wake up sheeple.  Especially the sheep who think they are shepards...ALL people who have been trying on the AUSTRIAN school of thought, needs to recognize, they've only been trying on anti-american fascism, totally against the constitution.   Is Ron/Rand Paul so smart, if they totally don't understand that?  Well they don't. 

Use your head, you still ain't (much).  But the desire is there, no doubt.  So figure it out, and come back to being a patriot.  Let the monetarists drown in their own anti-american ideology.  That includes all austrian, creative destruction, schactian, schumpeter fantasies that are all 'the rage' at how to 'save' america, by becoming fascist monetarists and promoting death to pay the banksters and the elite?  Sorry, after ending the fed, his usefullness is over.  Barack never had one, he had a mandate, and never used it once.  He went straight wall street monetarist fascist.  Last I checked, Obama supporters and Paul supporteres, don't want to be fascist.  So why are they in reality?  At some point people will notice the divergence, and move.  Be an early adopter.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:29 | 862138 mouser98
mouser98's picture

"everyone knows that unfettered free markets lead to monopolies"  FALSE.  monopolies are not sustainable in the market without government assistance/intervention.  look around you at all the monopolies and cartels in our economy today.  why do you think healthcare costs so much?  its because the AMA secured from the government a mandate to "regulate" medicine in the US, "in the interest of public safety" but what they really did was monopolize medicine and destroy their competition.  in the few years after the AMA received their mandate, the number of schools teaching medicine and educating doctors dwindled to a small percentage of what had existed before the AMA.  presto, competition eliminated, prices and profits go up.  this is just one example among thousands.  pick a sector and i can show you where the government has established a cartel or a monopoly and is allowing one or a few companies to rip off the consumer.

what really keeps greed in check is unfettered competition.  "the free market is a conspiracy to reduce all profits to zero" i don't know who said this, but if you apply sound logic to your thinking, you will see the truth of this statement.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:43 | 862170 chopper read
chopper read's picture

+1984

I really love you doing all of the typing here, mouser98.  its an absolute pleasure to sit back and read your clear-minded retorts.  keep up the fantastic postings!!

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:45 | 862177 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque. Quisque consequat sollicitudin pharetra. In tincidunt, odio in pharetra ultrices, nisi ipsum porttitor libero, sed pretium lorem neque sed ligula. Vestibulum eu tortor in justo sagittis ornare non id lacus. Nullam accumsan posuere dolor, in posuere sem tempor nec. Sed vel purus nisi. Donec sit amet mi nibh, a porttitor mauris. Donec erat nibh, placerat consectetur euismod vitae, dictum non sem. Nunc auctor orci vel augue vulputate sed pellentesque ante feugiat. Suspendisse porta cursus lacus, at tempor neque blandit et. Aliquam euismod mauris eu quam mattis venenatis. Suspendisse potenti. Nulla eu orci ut ante accumsan varius ac ac lorem. Class aptent taciti sociosqu ad litora torquent per conubia nostra, per inceptos himenaeos.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:46 | 862179 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque. Quisque consequat sollicitudin pharetra. In tincidunt, odio in pharetra ultrices, nisi ipsum porttitor libero, sed pretium lorem neque sed ligula. Vestibulum eu tortor in justo sagittis ornare non id lacus. Nullam accumsan posuere dolor, in posuere sem tempor nec. Sed vel purus nisi.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:46 | 862180 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque. Quisque consequat sollicitudin pharetra. In tincidunt, odio in pharetra ultrices, nisi ipsum porttitor libero, sed pretium lorem neque sed ligula. Vestibulum eu tortor in justo sagittis ornare non id lacus. Nullam accumsan posuere dolor, in posuere sem tempor nec. Sed vel purus nisi.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:47 | 862181 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque. Quisque consequat sollicitudin pharetra. In tincidunt, odio in pharetra ultrices, nisi ipsum porttitor libero, sed pretium lorem neque sed ligula.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:47 | 862182 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque. Quisque consequat sollicitudin pharetra.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:47 | 862185 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus. Cras at consequat quam. Proin in lectus massa, a pulvinar neque.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:47 | 862186 TheGreatPonzi
TheGreatPonzi's picture

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Donec ipsum ante, tincidunt sed aliquam ac, sagittis eu nisi. Duis sed tincidunt purus.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:31 | 862276 Thanatos
Thanatos's picture

That will make a nice eulogy for you.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 20:09 | 862631 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Thanks for adding 25 posts of shit.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:48 | 862188 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

monopolies are not sustainable in the market without government assistance/intervention.

I suspect you wanted to comment in some other discussion?

Because the discussion above shows the real-life example of Standard Oil Trust flourishing in a sustainable fashion in a no-regulation environment, for decades, to the detriment of citizens.

It grew to a huge and scary size, stifling and dominating many nearby sectors of the economy as well and it only got broken up once the government intervened ...

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:04 | 862217 mouser98
mouser98's picture

the Standard Oil monopoly is a myth.  in 1911, when the anti trust trial was held, there were 137 competing oil suppliers.  over the decades that Standard Oil supposedly strangled our country, supplies grew and prices dropped.  for example, kerosene (the industries major product) cost $0.30 per gallon in 1869 but $0.06 per gallon in 1911.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:30 | 862438 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

LOL, the fact that crude oil prices were at $58.43 in 1869 but went down to $13.99 in 1911 (mostly due to expanded production in other countries and there was an uptick in US oil imports in the early 1900s due to that) had nothing to do with the price of kerosine going down too, right? :-)

Just read what a court of law upheld:

"The general result of the investigation has been to disclose the existence of numerous and flagrant discriminations by the railroads in behalf of the Standard Oil Company and its affiliated corporations. With comparatively few exceptions, mainly of other large concerns in California, the Standard has been the sole beneficiary of such discriminations. In almost every section of the country that company has been found to enjoy some unfair advantages over its competitors, and some of these discriminations affect enormous areas."

Which findings were upheld by the Supreme Court as well.

Do you allege that there was a widespread conspiracy, covering the government, witnesses and the court of law to defraud an honest family business that just "happened" to control 90% of the US oil business over decades? :-)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:05 | 862484 mouser98
mouser98's picture

no, but the simple and important fact is that by the time the government held its antitrust lawsuit, the free market had already broken Standard Oil's monopoly.  in 1911 there were 137 oil companies operating successfully in the East.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:32 | 862277 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

to add to the comment above mine, even if you accept Standard Oil as a prime example of a monopoly, which I do not, one true example does not excuse or defend the current overbearing, corrupt, federal government.  I'll thow out a few phrases and you tell me if they are shining examples of why we need thorough federal government oversight:

  • interstate commerce act
  • internal revenue service
  • social security
  • unemployment
  • monetary penalties for not having health insurance
  • transportation security administration
  • "_______" Czar(s)
  • federal reserve bank (private yes, but government mandated charter)
  • patriot act
  • the list goes on and on and on.
Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:01 | 862214 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

+1 excellent response. 

I'm told repeatedly that unfettered free markets lead to monopolies, but I also see monopolies everyday, so does that mean we live in an unfettered free market?  Of course not.

At the end of the day, what is worse:  A monopoly or a government sancationed monopoly? 

I would argue a govenrment sancationed monopoly is worse everytime.  A normal monopoly is business.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly is corruption.  A normal monopoly is very unstable and will usually collapse on itself.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly is indefinite.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly requires new laws, people/agencies to enforce the laws (but not against the monopoly), campaign contributions/graft, taxes to support the new people/agencies (but not from corporate profits), etc.  The list goes on.

If we want to be fatalistic and say we're damned if we do and damned if we don't, then I still say the greater damnation comes from government involvment.  If people are so corrupt as to not be trusted with out govenrment intervention, then who runs the govenrment?  Aliens, God(s), or just normal people who are also corrupt?  Yeah, that's what I thought.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:32 | 862443 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Just check utilities monopolies ran by governments, versus private monopolies here and today in the US. Almost without exception the prices by government monopolies are lower and the price plans are more transparent than that of for-profit companies ...

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:53 | 862466 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

Name one US private utility monopoly that does not have a government blessing. 

You seem to be confusing private vs. state run corporation as opposed to private vs. government granted monopoly.  In the case of utitlies all are government granted monopolies but some are also state run corporations.  I don't care which is more expensvie since the problem I see is the government granted monopoly in the first place.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:52 | 862465 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

monopolies are not sustainable in the market without government assistance/intervention.  look around you at all the monopolies and cartels in our economy today.

 

Monopolies are sustainable as long as they have access to the resources to sustain themselves (like so many, many things, hint: like no monopolitistic structures)

Competition leads to monopolies with or without a government. When a government exists, monopolies can be led to play ball with the government. And only if the government is powerful enough to be deemed worthwhile to play ball with (if not, the government is merely bypassed)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:15 | 862501 mouser98
mouser98's picture

it does not follow logically that competition leads to monopolies when the essence of a monopoly is a lack of competition and the introduction of competition will break the monopoly.  it makes no sense.

the only thing a monopoly needs to sustain itself is a lack of competition, which cannot occur for any extended period in a free market.  in fact, any monopolistic situation that does occur will restrain its abuses for fear of creating competition where none exists.

Mon, 01/10/2011 - 05:03 | 863214 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

it does not follow logically that competition leads to monopolies when the essence of a monopoly is a lack of competition and the introduction of competition will break the monopoly.  it makes no sense.

 

It does follow. Your confusion lies between competition and concurrence.

I notice that US citizens often make that confusion, I dont know why.

Competition is a process to determine an option over others. Competition is about eliminating concurrence.

 

A hirer. A pool of applicants. In order to determine his options, the hirer organizes a competition. He draws into concurrence all the applicants. The main phenonenum is to eliminate the concurrence so that a few options emerge. Creation of oligopolies.

What you talked about might be the perpetual (and forced) reset of competition that it is the main selling product of sports.

A hirer could as well reset the competition process to start a new one.

The hirer sets a competition event labelled one that yields its options. He sets up another competition event labelled two and so on.

Of course, after a few events, every hirer in the world stops the cycle.

 

I never understood why people confuse competition and concurrence. In the US, people use competition when concurrence should be used. There must be something behind this, I dont know.

Very weird because even if the competition sports scene is rigged beyond recognition, the difference is blatant.

I can not think of a sports events that manage to conceal that a competition process progresses as concurrence is eliminated.

Usually, a sports events is like that:

-a competition event is set up

-competititors are then called to practice concurrence one with another

-round one: concurrence is decreased as competitors are eliminated (often, confrontations are made by pairs, the loser no longer compete), round two: new elimination of concurrence until the point when the last concurrence possibility comes into play. When this one is over, the competition process reaches its end. Monopoly.

Even the US sports competition scene, the most rigged stage in the world, (save maybe Formula one) never managed to hide that fact with formulae like play offs or stuff.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:06 | 862096 HEHEHE
HEHEHE's picture

Amen.  Simply no difference between Democriminals and Republicons. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:38 | 862156 chopper read
chopper read's picture

+1984

 

PERFECTLY PUT, HARVEY!!!

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:46 | 862178 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

+1 harveywalbinger

Some of your detractors seem to be arguing that "your" solution is worse than the current state of affairs.  I would posit that they are simply cowards. 

Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Green, etc.  no party today is presenting workable solutions.  The problems with America are such that any solution entails pain and suffering, only differing in how quickly it comes and how long it will last.  However, even if no good solutions have been presented, I would still rather identify, if necessary, with the party that, mostly, recognizes and admits to the current problems.  I see that party as the Libertarians.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:53 | 862318 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

In reality, though, they haven't thought for one moment about where survival-of-the-fittest, anti-Fed, anarcho capitalism eventually leads.

 

Oh no. DEAD WRONG AND UNFAIR. That's where you consistently fail to understand many of us here.  WE HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT IT.  Over and over, game playing, obsessing, planning, fearing, studying, wondering and worrying.  And the conclusion that many of us have come to is that heading in that general direction is better than where we're heading now.  And guess what?  If that means that I get swallowed up by a bigger fish???  So damn be it. 

I agree with (hate to admit it) your take on some tea partiers, that they have no clue what a balanced budget truly means; or severe austerity or deep tax cuts.  More than likely the end of the system.  But the other way has no different outcome, only a slightly different timeline.   But as you continue to deride most of us here, you seem to have failed to notice that we ARE perhaps aware of what we are asking for; maybe we really do recognize the unavoidable outcome.     

Red Neck - You aren't the only deep thinker here; if you could shed your arrogance for eight seconds and try to understand that.....  My question to you and those of you who try to label "Libertarians" (for lack of a better term) is: What is it you are so afraid of?  Are you REALLY SERIOUSLY looking out for the little guy, or is it for yourself?  From the perspective of conservatives, the consistent rantings against the "survival of the fittest" arguments tend to point more towards self interest than altruism.  If it REALLY SERIOUSLY is the little guy, have you not ever looked at how much the average "Conservative/Libertarian" actually does out of his own pockets to help?  (Not counting our much grumbled about taxes, and not counting the elite). 

You're a smart guy.  Can you honestly tell me you wouldn't find it liberating to actually be free?  Are you afraid?  Be honest.  No coming back with Glenn Beck/Sarah Palin/Camaro jokes, because I can't stand either of them and don't drive one.   Coming from a "Conservative" position, if 50% of us need help, and 50% of us are sufficient, don't you believe that you personally could help one, two or three people stand on their own?  I do believe that.  You, I and most of us here.

One of the big flaws in your analysis of people like myself is that you equate anti-Fed with anti-government and disdain for the rule of law.  You couldn't be farther from the truth.  Most of us are as law abiding as you get, we simply wish that the ones who made the law were approachable to the common man, therefore having some influence in those laws.  Let me say it again so that you and weightlifter boy understand where I and many others are coming from: ANTI-FED DOES NOT MEAN ANTI-GOVERNMENT OR ANARCHIST.

 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:42 | 862448 harveywalbinger
harveywalbinger's picture

Being anarchist, anti-Fed, or even anti-gubmint does not translate as being anti-American. 

Quite the contrary.  Its the obligation of the citizenry to challenge/question/ridicule the insane policies of the corrupt, broken, morbidly obese gubmint. 

The emperor has no clothes.  Spread the word

http://csper.org/
===>  Rennaisance 2.0

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:44 | 862169 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Funny, history shows that societies form to create protections from "gangs". These protections can be created without government and with public judicial systems to insure fairness.

There is no minority gang in history that has stolen more wealth than government. Just because you dress it up in a vote doesn't change it's essence. Further, a gang may steal from me on single occasions, but a government steals from my every transaction with the unlimited opportunity to increase it's percentage. 

By the way, you two are a terrible tag team.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:48 | 862187 chopper read
chopper read's picture

By the way, you two are a terrible tag team.

 

they've convinced themselves they're wining the imaginary debates in their big government controlled minds.  I feel sorry for Redneck Repugnant, especially: he gets PAID to blog against classical liberalism while calling himself 'liberal'.  ...what a sad individual. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:58 | 862207 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

he gets PAID..

That was sarcasm, you idiot.  

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:11 | 862227 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

history shows that societies form to create protections from "gangs".

Yes, of course - such as the Sherman anti-trust act and various prohibitions against price fixing and price discrimination :-)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:55 | 862198 mouser98
mouser98's picture

and no gang has murdered more people than the government

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:45 | 862459 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Funny, history shows that societies form to create protections from "gangs".

 

By that, you mean other gangs, right?

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:02 | 862476 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

That's a lot of ad hominem. So the constitution is bad because it was written by slaveowners therefore we don't have a republic?

 

More exactly, not that good as the Founders did not judge it worthwhile to abide by it.

 

Usually, it does not bide well. In the ancient world, before the coming of the US philosophical flavour, thinkers were required to illustrate their philosophy by their way of life. In certain periods of time, this could lead to the demand of suicide. Philosophers had misled their students on a false path and the price to pay was life. This way has issues. But this was not ad hominems or stuff like that.

Yet when it comes to the Founders and their immediate renegation on what they wrote, it shows that the Founders thought that at least the Constitution and its underlying principles were not good enough for them to follow.

Nothing much different than political promises by a candidate.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:55 | 862200 trav7777
trav7777's picture

who gives a fuck if they were rich slave owners?

That is a total ad hominem

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:26 | 862022 High Plains Drifter
High Plains Drifter's picture

Yes you are correct. We have gone from a nation under the common law to a nation under the laws of agency, which are enforced by unelected bureaucrats who are employed by these governmental agencies. This first started during the civil war and with the addition of many of the deleterious Constitutional amendments afterwards especially the 13th and the 14th amendments which instead of freeing the slaves, made us all slaves. The Constitution in reality is no longer relevant. This is why when you go to court, and you might bring up the Constitution, the judge will not hear it because he will say that it does not apply because courts now ,are no longer under Constitutional mandate, which again, started happening after the civil war and also with FDR who sealed the effort with the "new deal". This is why the system is broken and cannot be fixed. The bureaucrats feed and are at the behest of the beast and do its bidding and they call the thing they do, a job of sorts. So now we have one in six Americans who work for the government. Perhaps this was always the plan. For you see, when these people work for the government, then they are less likely to rebel against said government. So basically, you have many Americans have been shall we say "bought off" one way or the other, inclusive of course, with food stamps, and welfare and SSI payments and social security payments. How can a nation break free from a tyrannical government when many of its citizens are beholding to that government?  How can this happen?  This country is broken and cannot be fixed. It is burning now, slowly at first but the fire is picking up speed. Perhaps it is time for us to experience a bit of anarchy while the new America is sorted out. It will take about two years.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:28 | 862131 jmc8888
jmc8888's picture

Actually you don't.

We consent to gov't.  Which means it isn't stealing.

Now, right NOW, we are consenting to one form of governance, and they are governing just about exactly opposite.

It isn't gov't, it's bad governance.  Gov't can be good or bad, depending on the people and sohpistry filled ideologies.

Again, we have British Imperialist Monetarism, NOT American Captialism.

Ron Paul and Barack Obama, two fascists representing two monetary sides, both of which since they are MONETARISM, are anti-american.  (look in the constitution where it forbids MOENTARISM, and thus the idiocy of Barack Obama, Paul Krugman, Ron Paul and every Austrian is anti-american.  (not to mention all the other monetarist schools of thought)

Also you are wrong. We are a democratic republic.

Which means we have democracy about some things, and a republic to protect others.

The republic part was supposed to be including NO MONETARISM.  WHoops.  We fucked that up.  The Krugman and Paul's are dipshit anti-american monetarists.

The democracy part is to add to it that which we couldn't upon inception.  Like Slavery, Suffrage, even our Bill of Rights.  They all came AFTER the consitution, and we needed democracy to do it.

So it's clear YOU DON'T understand America.  YOu understand fascist austrian ideologies, and somehow THINK they are American.

Get your head out of your ass traitor, and perhaps you'll switch and not be one.  But whether you follow Barack or Rand/Ron, you're following and espousing anti-american fascism.  Look it up, I suggest larouchepac.com for all you need to know about the reality of the Barack Paul unitary executive with fascist legislative branch.  Austrian schools of thoughts is one of the most backwater, fascist ideologies out there.  (and we do all know that fascism is a british think tank ideology right? exported to a playground in Italy)

You see dipshits like you know no nuance.  You're insane, a dullard, and thus don't understand that you need to be able to separate good governance from bad governance.  You and your kind are incapable, or unwilling to even try to notice the difference.  Your lame ass answer is always.....no goverment.  Cut it and drown it in a bathtub.  WHo said that? Why one of the original fascists.

Fascism isn't just legislation that links gov't to corporations, it's also where gov't passes legislation that throws people to the corporate wolves.

You see the Ron/Rand Paul forget the 2nd part, which is 100 percent what Ron/Rand Paul are.  They want to throw you to the fucking wolves.  Say, oh if its important, no one will shop there, and if it gets bad everyone will mob up and change it.  So I guess in Rand Paul's world unless everyone in the country is concerned about you getting screwed over on a return, then you're out of luck.  Unless we all mob 24/7/365.24 than guess what, it isn't happening.

The fucktard Ron/Rand Paul's and the whole bullshit ideology they espouse, is FASCISM.  Learn it. Know it.  Do something about it.

Because they won't.  THey'll lead you to the slaughter, and say how american you are.  AND YOU"RE DUMBASS WILL BELIEVE IT.  Talk about sheeple.

Oh and if you like term limits, you're really an idiot.  Let's all have a bunch of rookies perpetually being under the gun of lobbyists who can spend whatever money they want.  Talk about a fascist's dream.   It doesn't change anything specifically, it only makes sure you have more churn, and always rookies.  It doesn't actaully change ANYTHING.  Fool.  Way to pin your hopes on another sohpistry filled idea that won't help in any way, definitely make things worse, AND you somehow give it more weight than you should preventing you from doing other things because somehow this is a big one.  Nope, it's nothing but trouble.

Finally as people wake up from realizing that all around them is fascism, true AMERICAN alternatives exist. 

Glass-Steagall

NAWAPA <---you all need to understand this...water, electricity, REAL GREEN....more rainfall...more arable land....WITH NO WWF FASCISM.

Mag-lev

Nuclear power

Fusion

Fusion Arc

Hamiltonian Credit System (not monteraism like Ron Paul and Barack Obama want)

Fixed Exchange rates (you know so the monetarists don't screw us over)

High Tariffs and Quotas (you know so the corporations don't outsource every job)

 

You won't find any of these types of ideas from Ron Paul or Barack Obama.  You better realize it.

They just offer you fascism.  So far, even the so called 'enlightened' are still falling for it.  Metaphorically, this is the cue for picture of Lucy holding the football, and you're fucking Charlie Brown. 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:40 | 862161 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

I did not consent to be packet sniffed on the interwebs, or having my picture taken every time I go through an intersection. A republic protects my voice, so long as I am not initiating force.

Fix exchange rates? We tried this with the Pound > $ pre-Bretton Woods. We tried this with bi-metalism. Nothing in nature is in a steady state. How do fixed exchange rates make sense in such a world? What happens when one country decides to slack off?

High tariffs, and quotas result in lack of competition, and higer prices. Good luck with that.

 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:59 | 862209 The Third Man
The Third Man's picture

Ron Paul, a fascist? Not by any stretch of what is a universally accepted standard definition of the word. Your argument, friend, needs some re-tooling.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:09 | 862223 mouser98
mouser98's picture

you will have to forgive him, he's been "Larouched"

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:07 | 862222 The Third Man
The Third Man's picture

I missed that Lyndon LaRouche bit at first reading....now it's apparent where your head is at.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:33 | 862147 chopper read
chopper read's picture

+ 1984

"the price of freedom is eternal vigilance." - Thomas Jefferson

 

the 'Counterfeiting Cabal' that is the private Federal Reserve Banking cartel can bribe anyone they like at the expense of liberty.  END THE FED.  

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:11 | 862176 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

End the Fed?

*LOL*

So the US government can beg the plutocrats to save our banking system like we did in the Panic of 1907 when our government went begging to Mr Morgan? 

That's great.  Instead of the President going to the Fed to save the system, he would go to Lord Blankfein and Lord Dimon and ask them to save our country.  

Ending the Fed would lead to the exact same crony capitalism that we have today, only infinitely worse.  Think it through. 

Your idealistic visions of free market capitalism where survival-of-the-fittest wins would have worked well in a prelapsarian world. Unfortunately, society is ruled by kniving, deceptive, narcissistic snakes well versed in the art of thievery. 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:13 | 862231 mouser98
mouser98's picture

where is written that the President must save the banking system?  check out the Suffolk Bank of the early 1800's.  Banks forced to sink or swim on their own do just fine, and don't need saving.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:26 | 862260 Red Neck Repugnicant
Red Neck Repugnicant's picture

Any president would attempt to save the banking system to prevent total anarchy in society, whether it's written down or implied. 

Are you trying to tell me that an elected official would keep his hands off and just let it all burn to the ground?  That is beyond reality.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 16:10 | 862330 ColonelCooper
ColonelCooper's picture

Again, though now I am painting with a broad brush: "What the Hell is it that you and those who think like you are so afraid of that you equate EVERYTHING with 'Total Anarchy'"?

Can't shit just break down and be rebuilt?  As things get worse and worse, the straw men and ad-hominems get worse and worse, and those most afraid get shriller and shriller. (Coming from both right and left, this is not aimed specifically at you)  Why not knock it off, and try to find a useful outlet for your fear?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:37 | 862449 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

It is in the human nature to try to salvage what is there and not 'let shit burn down'.

So just like past Presidents did it future Presidents, when there is no Fed, will run to private banking corporations as well, instead of letting 'shit burn down'.

Just like kings went to beg the big trade monopolies for money, such as the Hansa or the venetian merchants - who were the true power centers of Europe, for hundreds of years.

You are forgetting our sad history and you are repeating it.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:35 | 862533 mouser98
mouser98's picture

how about actually reply to what i said when you reply to my comments.  i said that a banking system that knows it will have to sink or swim on its own will not ever need saving.  go and read about the Suffolk Bank and educate yourself.  maybe then you won't need to identify yourself as a red neck.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:13 | 862497 The 22nd Prime
The 22nd Prime's picture

Deleted - lost in thread vortex

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:06 | 861730 thetruth
thetruth's picture

The bottom line is that we can all see problems, but no one is sure how to fix them.  While we can hypothesize as to what might work, there is no way to know for sure.

I fear more for those who cannot see any problems.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:42 | 862165 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

We may be standing before the Gordian Knot. There may be only one solution.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:43 | 862456 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Fact is, if you think that the current model of democracy is beyond repair and cannot be repaired "from the inside", then you have given up any pretense of freedom. You will have to act against the wishes of hundreds of millions of people. It does not get any more unfree than that ...

 

What is that? Are you stating that nobles under good King Georges were not free? Yet the US citizens went against their wishes.

Please explain why going against the wishes of hundreds of millions of people would be yield up pretense of freedom.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:02 | 861619 creviceCaress
creviceCaress's picture

v

v

v

v

      voting rights?

...democracy works...?

 

ah yes, the old IF YA DONT VOTE DONT BITCH bullkaka.....deal with it or move out.

 

yo more critical titties, ya got to stay away from the red/white/blue kool-aid, i get the feeling yer not staying within truth boundaries here on ZH and you actually believe in this united shams of america.  wake up son, the land of the free/home of the brave is one of the most spectacular myths spewed onto humans;  take your current 'understanding' of what america has always stood for, turn it on its head so that the 'justice/freedom/good will' part is in the corrupt/elitist/BAU murkiness and there lies the greatest nation on the planet..sarcasm intended.

 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:03 | 861725 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Go around and ask other citizens whether they are proud of being americans and whether they like living in the US.

The answer is a very significant majority of 'yes' - well above that of most other modern countries. Survey after survey has shown this more formally as well.

So I do not accept your view that americans feel opressed and want a minority like yours 'free' them. They might be wrong - but this is how they feel.

More abstractly: you do not have the right to free other people against their wishes. Persuade them, yes - force them, not.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:17 | 861752 Max Hunter
Max Hunter's picture

"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free" GOETHE

You, sir, are an idiot..

The good new is you are being junked profusely..

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:41 | 861790 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

Erm, did you know that this Goethe quote is a (popular) myth and that he probably never said that? I think it's pretty telling of the quality of your argument that you are relying on false quotes.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:05 | 861839 Max Hunter
Max Hunter's picture

and that he probably never said that

I rest my case..

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:47 | 861941 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

I am simply being honest: we do not have a recording of all utterings of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, so how could I claim that he could never have said that?

I can certainly say that this quote is a popular myth though, as it has never been sourced back to any writing of Goethe, nor to any writings of contemporary witnesses.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:44 | 862298 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

Why argue the origins of a quote rather than its meaning?  If the quote was from John Doe Smith, does that make the quote any less meaningful? Perhaps it does, but does it make the quote devoid of meaning?  Of course not. 

Now that you have sufficiently impressed us with your knowledge of Gothe quotations, and have possibly prevented the inaccurate accredidation of said quotation to Gothe, can we return to the meaning of the quote, and its relevance to the discussion at hand?

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:41 | 862451 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Well that quote was put there to impress with authority. It is a common right-wing trait to settle arguments by referring to authority. (The sign of emotional insecurity, group think and lack of original thought.)

I just pointed out that this particular authority is fake.

The quote's meaning, when stripped of its false attribution, is banal and can be disputed. Who are you to declare 300 million americans 'slaves'?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:04 | 862483 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Go around and ask other citizens whether they are proud of being americans and whether they like living in the US.

The answer is a very significant majority of 'yes' - well above that of most other modern countries. Survey after survey has shown this more formally as well.

 

The same could be said on Nobles. So what? Where does this lead?

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:53 | 861818 aerojet
aerojet's picture

It does no good if voters are ignorant.  Also, there's nothing that makes me believe the US government acts in the interest of the majority of the people.  Rather, it acts at the behest of major political donors and insiders.  And the US government murders foreigners by the thousands.  So you tell me, what is more barbaric, the acts of one raging maniac or the last 150 years of the US Government?  Yeah, thought so.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:02 | 861836 DonnieD
DonnieD's picture

I don't think you get it. We've already replaced the majority with the minority and the result is the same.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:26 | 862020 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Note that one possible reason for this could be that there is manipulation of the voting results or manipulation of the voting process.

But an equally possible reason could be that it is simply what the "will of people" necessarily results in - it's just that when brought back to the individual, they deny that they wanted it.

It works like this: every citizen votes for "his cool local politician" which cool local politician does such a good job of protecting local interests and exposing "the corrupt, hypocritical politicians of other people".

Problem is, it's a single country, so the end result will be the mix of everyone's "cool local politician" who is also "the corrupt, hypocritical politician of other people".

See, this is a rational, logical end result that no-one will identify with - but which is still a consequence of the "will of people".

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:53 | 862315 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

I think this is actually an insightful comment, but your "logical end result" does not follow because people do not have equal access to money and modes of communication.  The choices for voting are all pre-vetted candidates.  I liken it to Coca-Cola having a taste test.  Do you like Coke Classic or New Coke?  You don't get the option to say neither you would rather have Sprite.  Coke Classic (Republicans), New Coke (Democrats), no option for Sprite (third party) because your masters do not want that choice.

Taken from that perspective your comment is still insightful, but the perception of the people that their candidate is good and the other candidate is corrupt is really just good propoganda based on access to money and modes of communication.  In reality they are all corrupt because they have all been pre-vetted and are approved for consumption.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:46 | 862461 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Maybe - but I am seeing something else.

I see it that a regular guy who has the traits for a good politician can climb the ladder very fast and can get into the national spotlight rather quickly - even without too many dirty compromises.

I just see that those traits that are expected from "my nice local politician" looks evil from the other side: you. It's this fundamental "us versus them" mentality that permeates everyday life which turns politicians into such sociopaths: or rather, the link of causality is probably in the other direction: which filters out the sociopaths to be the most successful politicians.

It's just that we dont realize and recognize the end result as our own doing: our politicians are our own weird, magnified, deformed mirror image.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:54 | 862469 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

You are ignoring the fact that even in non-two-party democracies in Europe 95% of elections are won either by a "conservative" or by a "progressive".

The reason is not some big conspiracy, but because people (voters) like group-think and choose one or the other "big" party early on in their lives. The non-conformists like you (or me) are very much in the minority.

Yes, the political discussions and the voting procedures tend to be slanted in favor of the big parties, but this is really mostly because people prefer big parties and because the same mechanisms that create monopolies in business life creates monopolies/cartels of political power as well.

Even 'clean' experiments with fresh democracies, where a dozen new parties were started artificially with well-spread-out politicians in all parties and with well-spread-out resources given to all the new parties showed 'clustering' and 'aggregation' effects after some time, and within a decade or two the political landscape simplified down to two or three realistic choices.

And that's mostly the will of the people really - just like there's rarely more than one or two football clubs per big city, right?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:07 | 861979 A_MacLaren
A_MacLaren's picture

We are not supposed to have a democracy, but a democratic republic, wherein the rights of the minority are protected from the tyranny of the majority; and I would add the weak/poor/commoner are protected from the powerful/rich/elite.

In a democracy, absent protections, you have the result of 2 wolves and a sheep deciding what is for dinner.  Or the powerful/rich/elite providing overwhelming influence in regards to political decision making to their benefit, which appears to be resulting in plutocratic tyranny. 

And allow me to preempt your anticipated response, vis-a-vis a political system of 2 parties and voting for the "other" candidate, when the two parties are effectively controlled by the same powerful/rich/elite.  "Voting rights" are a straw-man counter argument when all potential candidates are denied equal access to the communications channels due to funding and editorial control that has been amassed by the powerful/rich/elite.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 19:59 | 862625 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Yep, we are........problem is, we have felonious voting, and electronic machines being changed at will, forgotten votes(that change an election) FORGOTTEN in a car trunk for 2-3 days, and they are allowed to be included.

The system has been compromised..............something has to give.

FAST.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:27 | 862024 goldfish1
goldfish1's picture

Hell no you don't have your voting rights. diebold has your voting rights.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:29 | 862025 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

The United States is a Constitutional Republic, not a democracy- although the elites keep trying to change us that way. In a Republic, we protect minorities from the "tyranny of the majority" by having guaranteed rights. When your government systematically eviscerates these rights- it becomes the enemy of the Republic and the People. 

Second, free markets are not the cause of the kind of monopolies that formed in America. They were government "protected" monopolies that used the police power of the state to insure their power over the market. In an effort to better their public image, we passed laws against monopolies, but allowed cartels to develop with guaranteed market shares.

Your failure to understand basic principles of economics, history and political science are the glue that keeps your propaganda together. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:48 | 862063 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

So do you deny that the people have the power to elect representatives that have the power to change the Constitution any which way they wish to?

I.e. do you deny that practically speaking the majority has the right to do what the majority wishes to do?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:17 | 862112 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

The people have the power to elect representatives that have been chosen by one of two elite groups. As the cost of election has become so high, running without the benefit and backing of one of the two parties is futile. This insures that the candidate the elites want is elected. Any outcome beside this is so statistically small to be a mere aberration.

Second, as some parts of the Bill of Rights are occasionally upheld, no, the majority cannot do whatever it wants. If you haven't been paying attention- there has been freedoms guaranteed for people where the majority has sought to keep them down. They are often referred to as "minority rights".

These rights have an effect on the type of legislation that is presented for approval. While the government attempts to supercede them with new tyrannies (the patriot act, income tax, federal reserve,  etc) some freedoms remain intact.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:52 | 862193 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Those rights will be trumped if the Constitution is modified or amended by the majority though, right?

Especially if it modified in a way that also impacts the judiciary.

If you think that elected representatives of a sufficiently large majority do not have the power and political will to enact just about anything the majority wishes to do you are being exceedingly naive.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 20:04 | 862628 DosZap
DosZap's picture

I have been on this horse for 5yrs, why do 38 states say screw you, and call a COn Con.

Congress MUST allow it, and the states get to choose their delegates.

We (AMERICANS) can amend, change, anything we want............and it's LAW.

EO's?, PDD's?,Senate/House? end arounding the Constitution, NO MORE!!!!..screw you..WE take control of everything we want.

It's OUR COUNTRY.

Lets grow some GONADS and call that bitch!.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:18 | 862243 M4570D0N
M4570D0N's picture

uh, no. We live in a Republic, specifically so that the minority would not be lost to mob rule as is the case with a Democracy.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:55 | 862558 Al Gorerhythm
Al Gorerhythm's picture

Democracy: The tyranny of the majority over the individual.

Liberty: The unalienable rights if the individual.

Government: an admistrative entity charged by the constitution to protect the liberty of the individual against tyranny, foreign or domestic.

Gold and silver: The means by which to protect an individual's rights against intrusive big government, etc.

You see, it all depends on ones perspective on democracy and what its impact is on the individual. You think that the voting system enables freedom. I think the voting system isn't needed at all and in fact enables big government which obviously works against it (Liberty of the individual).

The Republic was based on a constitution where, on pain of death for treason against it, politicians would hold a Knight's Templar role in protecting it. What an Utopian idea. Who would have thought?

How did it get to this? One has to conspire to uproot a Libertarian's blood-soaked, ideological, republican constitution.

If you accept the unconstitutional changes, that have been enacted by subterfuge and fiat, then you reject the guidelines of The Republic. As for the so called liberal constitutional activists; We don't.

There has been and will be blood.

Perhaps it has begun. Joe Stark flys into the IRS building, Loughner shoots a politician and in the ensuing mayhem inexcusably, indiscriminately, horrifically, innocents have been killed. That's the way it will unfold. It can't go any other way because by their actions and intentions (they have the guns), they leave no other options.

America was warned by its founders of this, and here we are. The Tree of Liberty has to be fertilized.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 20:02 | 862624 Al Gorerhythm
Al Gorerhythm's picture

DP

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 19:53 | 862619 DosZap
DosZap's picture

Bingo, already have a Fascist one being set  up.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:06 | 861628 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Such a tired argument, and so full of holes.

First off, all the examples you cited save for standard oil arose after the US switched to a centrally planned economy (in 1913).  Standard Oil was able to obtain "monopoly" status because it cut waste.  I guess you prefer that the guys the drove out of business still be around, with their business practice of dumping gasoline in rivers.  Standard Oil used it to run their machines.

From Wikipedia:

 


Standard Oil's market position was initially established through an emphasis on efficiency and responsibility. While most companies dumped gasoline in rivers (this was before the automobile was popular), Standard used it to fuel its machines. While other companies' refineries piled mountains of heavy waste, Rockefeller found ways to sell it. For example, Standard created the first synthetic competitor for beeswax and bought the company that invented and produced Vaseline, the Chesebrough Manufacturing Company, which was a Standard company only from 1908 until 1911.

One of the original "muckrakers" was Ida M. Tarbell, an American author and journalist. Her father was an oil producer whose business had failed due to Rockefeller's business dealings. After extensive interviews with a sympathetic senior executive of Standard Oil, Henry H. Rogers, Tarbell's investigations of Standard Oil fueled growing public attacks on Standard Oil and on monopolies in general. Her work was published in 19 parts in McClure's magazine from November 1902 to October 1904, then in 1904 as the book The History of the Standard Oil Company.

Also funny that you think that a large group of people who want to provide you with a product of service in exchange for money can in any way be worse than a group of people who uses guns to steal money from you and enforce arbitrary rules on you.  Further, the "bad" monopolies are 100% created by the government.  If someone came up with a better way to run machines or supply oil, they would have put Standard Oil out of business.  Since government got involved, the big companies have LOVED it , because the regulations they impose are fixed costs which prevent new competition from arising.  Why is is that there hasn't been a new major car company to open up in the US in 85 years?  Ford, GM, and Chevrolet were all founded within 15 years of each other, and prior to the switch to a planned economy in 1913.  The only remaining domestic car manufacturer from after that date is Chrysler, and SURPRISE, they are the smallest one, even though they have had plenty of time to catch up.

Read this: http://mises.org/daily/621

Again, more critical thinking needed.


 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:45 | 861766 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

You need to read up a bit more on anti-trust and Standard Oil Trust history:

The first antitrust law at the federal level in the U.S., and still the most important in many ways, is the Sherman Antitrust Act. It was enacted by Congress in 1890 in response to the growing public revulsion at the widespread and blatant abuses by monopolies that had gained control of almost every major industry as well as of much of the government. The most notorious of these monopolies was The Standard Oil Trust, which became the first to be successfully dismantled under the Sherman Act

http://www.linfo.org/monopoly_predatory_tactics.html

If you think that the goal of monopolies is to sell you a superior product at reasonable prices then I've got a bridge to sell you.

You also need to read Ida Tarbell's history of Standard Oil tactics more carefully.

Those predatory tactics included (amongst others):

  • "The Oil War of 1872": Using control of the rail network to increase control over oil: irrationally high transport fees charged on competitors.
  • "Cutting to Kill": Standard Oil created shell companies that pretended to be "independent" and under-sold (dumped) against smaller competitors at a loss - driving them out of business.
  • "The Buffalo Case": Experienced drilling expert from small local competitor leaves for Standard Oil shortly after mysterious explosion at the local competitor's site.
  • "The Price of Oil": Low oil prices where there is competition to Standard Oil, high prices where there is none.

That is the kind of 100% un-free market what a 'free market' if left alone naturally degenerates into, and all of these incidents happened in the late 1800's, when there was virtually no government regulation whatsoever.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:30 | 861895 tmosley
tmosley's picture

So doing everything they can to cut the price of oil is evil? 

The thing is, you are starting from a faulty premise--that Standard Oil was something called a monopoly, defined as a company that was alone in its field, and always would be.  That's the thing, standard oil NEVER increased their prices.  They always decreased them!  If they raised their prices, then either other oil companies would take over market share, or others would open new oil companies!  You clearly didn't read the article I gave you.

I note that you did not refute my other thesis that we are in a centrally planned economy.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:39 | 861922 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

You're naive. They imposed rebates and kickbacks to everyone they sold oil to and to any business that they utilized for transportation, construction etc...

So there was "The Official Price" and then there was "The Real Price" : it was nearly 50% higher since you had to kick back. But the official low price kept competitors from getting a chance to break into the business. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:16 | 862000 tmosley
tmosley's picture

If the price was really 50% higher, then they wouldn't have been able to compete.

But so what?  The government imposes 1000's of times more monopolies than the free market ever created.  That smashes this whole stupid argument by itself!

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:29 | 862028 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

When you're a gang you don't need to compete. They used practices all of which are now illegal to take down new oil businesses trying to break in. None of the practices had anything to do with 'quality' or 'price'. That's why it was ANTI-competitive. The railroads were not allowed to transport the oil of any competitors or be cut out of any deals with the 900 lb gorilla. They just said 'no' to anyone else regardless of price. And wholesale customers had no choice but to buy from the 900 lb gorilla or face being shut out, blacklisted and targeted for revenge. Like in my old gang La Cosa Nostra. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:40 | 862157 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Sure, but you could only drive the price up so much before you lose A) anywhere where oil is produced locally, B) whenever another method is found for shipping oil (ie trucks or pipelines), or C) when you piss off the wrong railroad company.

This is NOT like your old gang, as they could use aggressive force.  Standard Oil could not.  If they did, then they should have been prosecuted and had their assets seized, as well as imprison those involved.

What IS like your old gang is the current system, where the big boys go crying to the government for increased regulation to "protect the consumer", which drives out any new competiton, leaving some form of oligopoly.  These regulations are enforced via implied force, and if resisted, deadly force.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:58 | 862204 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Look up "profit maximising monopolies". That is what most rational monopolies use in practice: they milk the market to maximize their long-term profits. In practice they rise prices high enough to not stifle consumption too much. There's no significant competition that could drive prices down.

It is equivalent to a fixed tax in effect, which is just so high to not make people revolt. The difference is that this tax is entirely arbitrarily enacted by a virtually perpetual economic entity and it cannot be 'voted down'. It's an unavoidable, un-negotiable tax. (And that's just one of many taxes - one for each monopolized area of the economy.)

It's all pretty ironic, considering that this suggestion comes from an anti-tax libertarian :-)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:32 | 862267 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Hehe. i love your trust in the good nature of people. People acting out of greed tend to act out of greed. There's no difference between a street gang charging protection money from all local businesses and an oil company charging a mandatory and necessary rebate for oil. Under the law in the 1890s there was no way to prosecute Standard Oil. There was no recourse. It was "my way or the highway" and Standard Oil enforced their rules. If you didn't comply you simply couldn't be in business. They didn't call them "Robber Barrons" for nothing. And the money they had relative to the average was way,way more than anything we see today. It was closer to what kings had in the monarchys of Europe. Money talks and big money only needs to whisper, my friend.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:21 | 862250 ZackLo
ZackLo's picture

you need to read a little bit more up on here I'll make it easy...and the only reason monopolies can sell a cheaper shitty product is because of the fiat note with the blank check of credit from the fed that seeps to the banks and then to the monopolies..

http://mises.org/Books/mespm.PDF  -rothbards man economy and state ,1400 pages think you can handle it? (read it all before you start trashing libertarians)

and the american economy and the end of laissez-faire-

http://mises.org/media.aspx?action=category&ID=217

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:34 | 861911 Caviar Emptor
Caviar Emptor's picture

Standard Oil was able to obtain "monopoly" status because it cut waste. 

They obtained monopoly as a gang enforcing their own brand of "justice": under the table rebates and kickbacks (which were specifically outlawed as anti-competitive practices), ruinous price cutting (to prevent ANY competition from forming startups, creating false shortages.......the list is long. You could not deal with them as a "businessman". You had to agree to be a member of their gang: you could not make decisions based on price, supply/demand, technological improvements and least of all 'cutting waste'. Instead you had to deal period or be cut out permanently and irrevocably. 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 12:54 | 861958 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Btw., this kind of Standard Oil predatory racket is completely legal under "unregulated free market" visions [1] of libertarians.

Those gents were only "contracting" you see. That one side of the contract was able to dictate all terms due to being the only supplier is of no importance. "It's still a matter of free will: either do business with us, or go bankrupt. It's not like we are forcing anyone you see."

[1] instead of 'visions' I should have said 'nightmares' I suspect.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:10 | 861989 Vagabond
Vagabond's picture

What type of system do you support?

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 17:57 | 862103 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

Dunno, none seems to work particularly well :-)

But there's some that suck really hard - and unregulated "robber baron" free markets are really high up on that list, right next to socialism. (instead of 'one party rule' they are about 'one company rule'.)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:20 | 862009 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Doublethink.  If they wouldn't do business with a set of businesses that wouldn't play ball, they are by definition sending business to their competitors.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:13 | 862039 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Erm, please do read the references I and others gave you. You are able to read material that is longer than a Twitter message, right?

One of the tactics Standard Oil used was exclusive rail lines. They were used in areas were there were no other rail lines but the ones controlled by Standard Oil Trust, physically. There were no 'competitors', there was exclusivity. Similar techniques were used with pipelines and other routes of transports.

Same went for refineries and other 'derived' oil industries. Either you contracted with Standard Oil (and paid the contractual kickbacks), or you went bankrupt.

It's not that difficult of a concept: if there's only one large supplier around that offers the overwhelming majority of material then you can contract only with him, right?

And once most businesses were contracted into the monopoly with long-term contracts, new competitors had no chance to start up: they had virtually no market to sell into, and even if they tried, prices in that area (and only in that area) were lowered by the monopoly for a short time until the start-up was killed off!

It does not take a rocket scientist to understand this - it's a simple concept: the bully in the schoolyard calls the shots. Why do you have so much trouble understanding this?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:52 | 862194 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Because it isn't backed up by fact.  One bully can't stand against a thousand little guys.

The propoganda offensive taken by Ida Tarbell, who's father's oil company (one of those that dumped gasoline in the rivers) was driven out of business by Standard Oil, was most effective.  Even now, more than a hundred years later, people still buy the bullshit.

From Wikipedia:

One of the original "muckrakers" was Ida M. Tarbell, an American author and journalist. Her father was an oil producer whose business had failed due to Rockefeller's business dealings. After extensive interviews with a sympathetic senior executive of Standard Oil, Henry H. Rogers, Tarbell's investigations of Standard Oil fueled growing public attacks on Standard Oil and on monopolies in general. Her work was published in 19 parts in McClure's magazine from November 1902 to October 1904, then in 1904 as the book The History of the Standard Oil Company.

This person stirred up public sentiment against a company that stopped the pollution of this nations rivers and made a profit by doing it because her daddy went out of business.  Boo hoo.  Find another business, or better yet, find a better way to produce and deliver oil.

But you still haven't answered why the Free Market is worse than what we have now, given that we have at least one thousand fold the number of monopolies today than we did then.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:19 | 862247 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Oh my, what a selective reading of history!

You must be one of those who also thinks that the AT&T monopoly, the IBM monopoly and the Microsoft monopolies were all fantastic things as well? :-)

Go fetch your daily dose of malware and spam - all results of Microsoft's "innovative security" :-)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:15 | 861998 Dollar Bill Hiccup
Dollar Bill Hiccup's picture

Sounds like doing business with China ... come to think of it, those Rockefellas had some Asian art collection ...

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:19 | 862007 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Uhhh...if you got kicked out of the "gang" irrevocably, it seems to me that that creates a captive market for their competitors.

Liberals are true masters of doublethink.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:45 | 862052 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

Erm, no. This "gang" (also called the "Standard Oil Trust") controlled the overwhelming majority of oil supply in the US.

If you did not "contract" with these gents you magically found your rail line transportation costs going up and you saw your supply of oil dwindle.

If you "contracted", you could only do that with long-term contracts.

Thus even if a new competitor came around, there was no market: all users of oil were locked into long-term contracts and were contractually kept from going to the competition ...

Creating a monopoly within a libertarian free market was exceedingly simple: no need to bribe government representatives, no need to lobby for friendly legislation, no need to be mindful of pesky anti-trust legislation, regulators, consumer watchdogs, future candidates and what not.

Just gain critical mass, corner the market aggressively and kill off competitors and innovation from that point on and milk the market for maximum profit and use that profit to strong-arm yourself into other markets as well gradually. That's what the Standard Oil Trust did.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:59 | 862210 tmosley
tmosley's picture

Sure, you could do that, but then you have to keep prices low forever, or else someone new will emerge the second they let their guard down.  http://mises.org/daily/621

You still haven't answered why the current system is better than the free market, given that thousands of times more monopolies are created and/or imposed by the state than ever happened under free market conditions.  You don't get to just gloss over this, state-worshipper.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:22 | 862253 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Erm, no. Read up "barrier of entry". The stronger a monopoly is, the higher the barrier gets.

If "entry into the market" means having to build hundreds or thousands of miles of railway lines, often through land already owned by the monopolist, then it's not true at all that the moment prices go up a new competitor will pop up :-)

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:45 | 862053 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

In a free market, there is nothing wrong with a monopoly. If the company seeks to leverage it's position, the consumers have the freedom to develop other sources. This acts as a brake on the behavior of the monopolist and will insure prices remain below what other competitors charge for the same type of product.

The Unites States was not a free market at this time and still isn't. The power of the state was used to get tax advantages, labor advantages over unions, acquisition of properties, etc. 

Were there abuses? Yes. All systems have abuses, but not all systems lead to the amount of abuses that our government has spawned- all in the name of socialism- not free markets. Intellectual rights is a great example of this. A government monopoly, continuously extended until it is over ten times the original founders decree.

Free markets are not perfect, they ASSUME imbalances and that those imbalances will require correction. However, government assumes the position of the ONLY provider of that regulation- regulation that is then created by the very elites whom own government and direct it's operation. This is why regulation never works- it is always written to protect the interests of those with the most influence and acts to stifle competition. Glass-Steagal is a great example of what happens to regulation, when the powers want it removed.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:15 | 862075 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

In a free market, there is nothing wrong with a monopoly. If the company seeks to leverage it's position, the consumers have the freedom to develop other sources. This acts as a brake on the behavior of the monopolist and will insure prices remain below what other competitors charge for the same type of product.

Erm, how do you reconcile your wish with the nasty historical reality of what the Standard Oil Trust monopoly was able to achieve?

In practice consumers had "freedom to develop other sources" only in theory as the barrier of entry was extremely high: it would have involved the building of thousands of miles of railway lines and oil pipelines, through land areas owned by the monopolist ...

So instead 'consumers' got locked into the monopoly lock, stock and barrel and had to pay higher prices for decades.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:23 | 862124 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Steam power. Coal power. The choice to not use power. Electricity. All forms of power that could have been developed, but the price of oil was cheapest. The barriers were created by government and the government was run by the same monopolists. You really should study the history of the time.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:26 | 862258 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

I like especially the "choice to not use power". Buggy carts, right? :-)

Read up "barriers of entry" - if they are high enough (and for pretty much any complex monopoly they are very high), there's just little chance for a competitor to enter. It's too expensive, too risky.

Also, those fancy new forms of power generation markets would be dominated by the monopolist too. Just like Microsoft kept gobbling up start-ups that looked promising.

And back to square one we are, just with an even larger monopoly.

You are really not thinking things through.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:53 | 862319 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Barriers to entry, if high enough will cause others to create new technologies. You assume the monopolists will control these new technologies, but your own example is a perfect example- Microsoft has lost market share and are becoming marginalized by new producers.

Microsoft depends on intellectual property laws that are excessive in scope to maintain their market position- laws written by government (as does Disney).

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:07 | 862486 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

Erm, read the references - common behavior of monopolists is either to supress new technologies (buy up all research and do nothing with them), or buy up promising companies. It's not that hard to do, and the monopolist has ample time to act before the competitor gets too big.

And no, Microsoft does not rely on the government for its monopoly: it relied on plain old-fashioned contract law with Dell, HP, Compaq and others. It created contracts that gave discounts to the PC OEMs - but those contracts were very long-term and were for a fixed number of future PCs that will be manufactured.

This had the stiffling effect that for a long time no OEM would ever consider a Windows alternative seriously - the Windows license has already been paid even for the PCs that ship with another OS.

Furthermore, the contracts (all highly secret, so the public never knew for real what's going on) generally forbade the PC makers from preinstalling anything but Windows on a given PC line. To install another OS a wholly different product line had to be created and marketed separately - with different hardware options.

Such contract language is what monopolies use to control and milk the market, and that is what they use to keep alternatives in check. Microsoft did not need the government at all.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 19:50 | 862614 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Erm, what references? 

Yet, your failure to address patent laws shows your inability to answer an argument. Without these statist protections, those companies would have been free to develop a free source or low cost source and compete.

Still, even with this attempt to control the market, Apple, Google, Redhat and IBM were able to dislodge and surpass Microsoft within the industry.

You're still talking about government supported monopolies, rather than their free market equivalent. You really need to improve you're attempts at doublespeak.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 13:59 | 862082 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

Were there abuses? Yes.

The Standard Oil Trust was entirely legal. By the time it was broken up it already controlled vast areas of the US economy.

Your claim that somehow consumers were able to stop it was simply not the case.

Don't you realize that the natural end game of a 'free market' is a really big fish remaining, which big fish does worse things and more expensively than the government, and which big fish, unlike the government, cannot be voted out of power?

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:28 | 862130 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Try to keep up. How is a Trust "entirely legal" ? Free markets do not make laws that legalize the operations of a business for it's own benefit. Because government made them legal.

One more question for you: are the corporations of today, run by these same monopolists, bigger or smaller? It appears the end game of government is "a really big fish remaining..."

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:27 | 862266 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

No, I mean, under a "no government, no regulations" regime a monopoly like Standard Oil is entirely legal.

So it's not "abuse". It's completely legal and works as intended - comes straight out of your system.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:58 | 862328 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

But Standard Oil didn't exist in a no government, no regulation environment. While monopolies are acceptable in free markets, that is not the case with Standard Oil. 

Unless I'm mistaken, the US government did exist in the 1800's. Like I've suggested in the past, please study history- especially economic history to develop an understanding of what actually happened, what terms mean, and how these ideas are fashioned into schools that deal with the consequences of "human action".

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 18:08 | 862491 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

Erm, even the most brazen right-wing economists will concede that the late 1800's were the ultimate no-regulations environment for businesses. It was called the era of the "Robber Barons" for a reason :-)

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 19:55 | 862622 Sean7k
Sean7k's picture

Why would I care about right wing economists? The economic history is clear concerning the time frame. When banks abused their capital requirements, they were allowed to suspend specie payments in gold while allowed to collect specie on debts owed them.

Government consistently backed large corporations against labor and brought in troops when ever asked. 

They were allowed to be "Robber Barons" by the government that supported their behavior. 

You write an awful lot for someone that knows so little. 

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 16:00 | 862336 Republic2009
Republic2009's picture

I'm told repeatedly that unfettered free markets lead to monopolies, but I also see monopolies everyday, so does that mean we live in an unfettered free market?  Of course not.

At the end of the day, what is worse:  A monopoly or a government sancationed monopoly? 

I would argue a govenrment sancationed monopoly is worse everytime.  A normal monopoly is business.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly is corruption.  A normal monopoly is very unstable and will usually collapse on itself.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly is indefinite.  A gov. sanctioned monopoly requires new laws, people/agencies to enforce the laws (but not against the monopoly), campaign contributions/graft, taxes to support the new people/agencies (but not from corporate profits), etc.  The list goes on.

If we want to be fatalistic and say we're damned if we do and damned if we don't, then I still say the greater damnation comes from government involvment.  If people are so corrupt as to not be trusted with out govenrment intervention, then who runs the govenrment?  Aliens, God(s), or just normal people who are also corrupt?  Yeah, that's what I thought.

Even if you accept Standard Oil as a prime example of a monopoly, which I do not, one true example does not excuse or defend the current overbearing, corrupt, federal government.  I'll thow out a few phrases and you tell me if they are shining examples of why we need thorough federal government oversight:

  • interstate commerce act
  • internal revenue service
  • social security
  • unemployment
  • monetary penalties for not having health insurance
  • transportation security administration
  • "_______" Czar(s)
  • federal reserve bank (private yes, but government mandated charter)
  • patriot act

the list goes on and on and on.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 14:27 | 862132 A Nanny Moose
A Nanny Moose's picture

Standard Oil was not a monopoly in the purest sense of the idea. JDR certainly had competition. He had to compete with Russian Oil companies who had better quality oil, and lower shipping costs. He had to compete with other forms of energy (coal, whales, wood, etc.) He may have had the lion's share of the market, JDR and his posterity may have had some shady dealings, but overall their practices were far from wholy monopolistic. That prices fell, rather than rose as he captured more US market share is a huge indicator, contrary to monopoly.

Monopoly is NOT a natural state of the free market. I use to think that it was as well. Then I discovered the Austrian school's logic behind monopoly. For monopoly to exist requires government intervention in the form of regulation, and taxbreaks/subsidies. The Enrons, Banks (hello...TARP, GLBA, Primary Dealer mechanism), Pharma, and yes Big Oil all receive benefits of government's heavy hand. Yes, these corps use money to buy politicians, but that is our fault for allowing our votes to be bought by politicians in the first place, and is another discussion for another thread.

Monopoly = Rising prices/profits. When profits are high, it results in other people entering the market seeking a share of those high profits. Competition...not monopoly.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 15:29 | 862270 More Critical T...
More Critical Thinking Wanted's picture

 

That theory of yours sounds nice, except that it does not match up observed reality: for example it does not explain the Standard Oil monopoly, which got created in a virtually regulation-free environment and was stable and sustainable for decades.

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 19:00 | 862564 ExploitTheMarket
ExploitTheMarket's picture

Biggest monopoly of all is the Federal Reserve...a monopolist and a price setter of what is probably the most important price in the economy.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 06:23 | 861419 StychoKiller
StychoKiller's picture

Your liberty to swing your fist ENDS at the tip of my nose!

"To take from one, because it is thought his own industry and that of his
fathers has acquired too much, in order to spare to others, who, or whose
fathers, have not exercised equal industry and skill, is to violate arbitrarily
the first principle of association, the guarantee to everyone the free exercise
of his industry and the fruits acquired by it." - Thomas Jefferson

 

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 09:36 | 861583 tmosley
tmosley's picture

"no taxes", "right to bear arms"

Sounds a lot more like you problem is with conservatives.  Combine you failure to properly identify the philosophy of groups, namely that you have gone to Crazytown and identified the GOP, a fascist organization, as libertarian shows that, true to your screen name, more critical thinking is needed.

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:14 | 861633 macholatte
macholatte's picture

Get outside the box folks.

The shooter was probably recruited and indoctrinated by left wing Progressives.  So while everyone is focused on the rignt side of the political spectrum, it is the left that did the deed. A perfect distraction from the business at hand, taking control of America, voiding the Second Amendment, creating a police state. 

This is exactly the kind of thing Soros engineers.

 

Change means movement. Movement means friction. Only in the frictionless vacuum of a nonexistent abstract world can movement or change occur without that abrasive friction of conflict.
Saul Alinsky

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 10:36 | 861670 macholatte
macholatte's picture

Here ya go. From ZH itself.

 

Jared Lee Loughner's YouTube Site Reveals Clues About The Killer, Lists Mein Kampf And Communist Manifesto Among Favorite Books

http://www.zerohedge.com/article/jared-lee-laughners-youtube-site-reveals-clues-about-killer-lists-mein-kampf-and-communist-m

 

Not exactly Libertarian or even GOP. The jerk has been a pawn of the Progressives.

 

Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent's fate.
Sun Tzu

Sun, 01/09/2011 - 11:47 | 861803 Boilermaker
Boilermaker's picture

Are you serious?

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!