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Philosophy: Socialism

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McClatchy News interview

The long-simmering problems that boiled over into a global financial crisis last September require a strong government hand in the workings of the U.S. economy and financial system, according to economist and author James K. Galbraith.

Galbraith, a professor and scholar at the University of Texas at Austin, is the son of the late economist John Kenneth Galbraith, whose books in the 1950s influenced how Americans viewed economics and American capitalism.

 

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Reuters

Capitalism is evil. That is the conclusion U.S. documentary maker Michael Moore comes to in his latest movie "Capitalism: A Love Story."

Blending his trademark humor with tragic individual stories, archive footage and publicity stunts, the 55-year-old launches an all out attack on the capitalist system, arguing that it benefits the rich and condemns millions to poverty.

"Capitalism is an evil, and you cannot regulate evil," the two-hour movie concludes. [Actually you can't regulate capitalism, or it isn't capitalism.]

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LiberaLaw / Gary Chartier

[An anarchist reform plan] could provide an opportunity to link a variety of other pro-freedom legal changes with (radical) health-care reform. It would force proponents of statist options to ask more clearly whether they value the goals they say they want to achieve more than they value the opportunity to give more power to technocrats.

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WSJ

"The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out
of other people's money." Margaret Thatcher

With a projected $1.8 trillion deficit for 2009, several trillions more in deficits projected over the next decade, and with both Medicare and Social Security entitlement spending about to ratchet up several notches over the next 15 years as Baby Boomers become eligible for both, we are rapidly running out of other people's money. These deficits are simply not sustainable. They are either going to result in unprecedented new taxes and inflation, or they will bankrupt us.

While we clearly need health-care reform, the last thing our country needs is a massive new health-care entitlement that will create hundreds of billions of dollars of new unfunded deficits and move us much closer to a government takeover of our health-care system. Instead, we should be trying to achieve reforms by moving in the opposit

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Audrey Mayer

I have been hearing a lot of pundits and politicians bemoan “socialized medicine” and its supposed inefficiencies and inequities. These horror stories are never accompanied by data, just hearsay and anecdotes from “a friend of a friend” in Canada or the United Kingdom. Rarely have I heard from people who have themselves experienced a universal public health care system. As one of those people, I thought I should speak up.

While living in Finland for three years, I experienced socialized medicine up close and personal. I gave birth to my son there.

Finland’s public health care system is run by a government agency called KELA, and the doctors, nurses, dentists, and other health care workers are government employees. KELA usually covers 100% of the cost of most services at public clinics, with small copayments for prescriptions and hospital stays that are scaled to a patient’s income. Finland also has many private clinics that are available to those who w

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MyWay AP

WASHINGTON (AP) - Senior House Democrats drafting health care legislation are considering slapping an unspecified financial penalty on anyone who refuses to purchase affordable health insurance, a key committee chairman said Monday.
 
In addition, officials said Democrats are considering a new tax on certain health insurance benefits as one of numerous options to help pay for expanding coverage to the uninsured. No details on the tax were immediately available, and no final decisions were expected until next week at the earliest.
 
These officials said drafters of the legislation will include a government-run insurance option as well as plans offered by private companies. The government option draws near-unanimous opposition from Republicans and provokes concerns among many Democrats, as well, although President Barack Obama has spoken out in favor of it.
 
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Slate

The Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal continue to lead with the nationalization of General Motors. When the automaker filed for Chapter 11 protection yesterday morning, it "became the second-largest industrial bankruptcy in history," notes the WSJ. President Obama marked the moment "by barely mentioning it," points out the NYT, instead choosing to focus on how filing for bankruptcy will give GM another shot at survival. Some Republican lawmakers were quick to criticize the Obama administration's decision to infuse more than $50 billion in taxpayer money into the automaker and called it another example of the deepening involvement of the government in the private sector. Others were skeptical that so much money was given "to a company lacking an answer to its most profound problem: how to get more car buyers to choose its cars and trucks," notes the LAT. Some members of Obama's party, particularly from i

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