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A country with a capitalist economy, but social purposes in order to help poor people a give then opportunities such as free education.

I am not socialist nor a communist guy, but I think we should work for or needs and the government should give opportunities to the people who can't pay for a private college, they should create public colleges like in Brasil or Venezuela(colleges are public a long time before Chavez's regime or Maduro' regime)........ Anyway I want to know what do you thing about a government with a capitalistic economy with social purpose in order to help anyone....

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    Apr 27 2014: William,
    I wasn't taking cheap shots or expressing old prejudices. I am not particularly intelligent but I was able to check the numbers. Thousands of Cubans left from Miami when Castro came to power. They tell stories that Cuba was not a free state.
    Then I was living in Germany when the wall came down. I went into the eastern states and saw for my own eyes what the effects of soviet style government on the people. What ever could be said for the positive effects of this style of governance on the people, I will say that the negative effects were overwhelming. A few years later in the early nineties, I hosted a Russian schoolboy on an exchange program for a German American school. He could have been an alien from another planet in his reaction to West Germany. You should have seen him try to eat his first banana.
    I have seen what socialistic governments do to the joy in people first hand, Capitalistic countries maybe terrible, but they are so much better then the others.
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      Apr 29 2014: sigh, this thread is about literacy not tired old prejudices and you apparently know nothing about the Cuban people and are simply spouting the party line of arrogance and U.S. indoctrination yourself.

      Once again, Cuba has one of the highest literacy rates in the world and that is direct response to the purpose of this thread,. not muck racking..
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        Apr 29 2014: Sorry,
        I know your thread was about literacy, And I agreed, Cubans are highly literate. I was just pointing out that the Cubans are paying a high political price for their literacy.
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          Apr 30 2014: and I reiterate, you know nothing more about Cuba and its people than the tired old, small minded prejudices and mean-spirited rhetoric that has come to define the U.S.
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        Apr 30 2014: Your right, I have never been to Cuba. But I voted for a American of Cuban descent, who has talked about his father's homeland and the trials and tribulations of the Cuban peoples under Castro.
        Buy the way, the tired old, small minded prejudices and mean spirited rhetoric that has come to define the US is why we have TED conversations for those of us that like to expound on them.
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    Apr 30 2014: "Nikita Khrushchev knew it was over when for just 10 minutes he visited the Quality Foods supermarket in San Francisco on Sept. 21, 1959.

    At home the Soviet Premier and First Secretary of the Communist Party well knew Muscovites were doing what they always did, getting in long lines for what little was available."

    Capitalism will bring free education through the Khan academy and similar just like the supermarket raised the standard of living of the average American in 1959.
  • Apr 29 2014: I fully agree that education is a worthwile social program, one of the few that can actually break people out of poverty. Paying for college educations is something America does not currently do, but consider this: You can send 2 people to Yale for the same price as sending 1 to Jail. America currently has 25% of the world's prisioners with only 5% of the population. Fix the corrupt Private Prision systems, end incarceration programs such as the War on Drugs and release non-violent offenders and you will have the money to pay for free college educations.
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    Apr 27 2014: Jorge,
    In my state, it is acceptable to provide public (free) education to the citizens, Since the founding of this country, when it was thought that this new form of governance... a constitutional republic.... was difficult to understand, and it would be important for citizens to learn about it. As the need for higher education evolved, many states created higher educational opportunities for it's citizens.

    I would like to say that it was a purely noble concept, but states learned that a well education population that met the needs of capitalists provides increased tax revenue.

    Now, because in our legal constructs to give public funded higher education to few is not appropriate, our state colleges and universities have tuitions to attend. However, it is not illegal to give scholarships. So, we have many great scholarship programs. For one, if you graduate from school in the top 10% of your class, you are tuition free,
    There are a number of other programs that could provide an ambitious student a college education. I am not sure, but I believe that all states have such programs

    I would like to believe that these states have altruist motives, but the capitalistic system needs educated employees to create and make the goods and services that markets need. Hence, the symbiotic relationship. Now, in the light of societal purpose of helping the poor.... I think it would be safe to say that capitalists really don't care about an educated, valued employee's economic background.
  • Apr 26 2014: It is my thinking that capitalism and the greater social good are mutually exclusive.

    Capitalism means:

    Capitalizing on what others don't know, and then profiting by taking advantage of that.

    It is also taking advantage of bad things that happen to others. Profiting off the illness, accidents, crimes, mistakes and catastrophes that happen.

    It is also capitalizing on these 'breaks' and using that advantage to keep others down, thus maintaining a disadvantage that works to your advantage and then:

    Capitalizing on that advantage to widen the distance between those with and those without.
    It is fraught with reasons for fear, greed, crime, creating inequality, poverty, slavery and so on.

    It is by default, an unjust system that cannot be made just.

    There is another way, but until we give up our love of capitalism, we will not find it.
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      Apr 26 2014: Capitalism mean using one's own capital (financial assets) to make a living. There can be no social freedom without economic freedom.
      • Apr 27 2014: Have you not heard of the many cultures that did not use money/wealth, but that had strong, egalitarian, peaceful, and freedom-loving cultures?

        consider the Iroquois as only one instance. They had the longest standing democracy (by concensus) of any other culture in all of recorded history. They had no poverty, no police, no lawyers, no prisons, no IRS, no NSA, no divisions within their society. A law didn't become a law without unanimous consent. This forced the people to work together for the benefit of all -- so unlike our culture.

        Those early American luminaries, such as Ben Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, John Locke, and others spoke of the native american indians as the happiest people known to earth. By comparison to theirs, our culture was barbaric
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          Apr 27 2014: Yes, I have heard of the Iroquois, where all men were equally free to be farmers in peacetime and soldiers otherwise,

          Where women were equally free to be the property of their husbands and had no rights whatsoever.

          Where children were, again, the property of their fathers and equally free to receive no formal education in the absence of a written language.

          Where everyone was equally free to die of old age in their thirties in the absence of any sort of healthcare.

          This is the Iroquois you're talking about, right?
    • Apr 29 2014: Gail G3
      I have said things very similar to what you wrote above but would still like to add that you were eloquent and accurate. Well done, well said.

      In spite of the fact that nothing is perfect, most all systems had money, so they had a means to become corrupted and did so.

      But now, when someone mentions trying a new way, they are either demonized with a word (commie, socialist), in order to mock, minimize, marginalize, and dismiss, new thought, new angles, new perspectives and any and all discussion. one reason being it would force people to truly learn how to think, imagine, dream and then follow through and do.

      Capitalism is a rotten system and it is rotten to the core. Any system that capitalizes on the bad luck, deception or any other things like you mentioned, is a rotten system.

      I find it amazing that people think and call this "civilization". We humans have not created, invented civilization nor have we or are we, civilized.

      Advertising in Amerika joins a military medic and a sports physician and calls them both, "sports healers"!

      Really? Like the brainwashing of American'ts is that war, killing, death, is all one big sport.

      And they're buying it.
  • Apr 26 2014: I believe Gandhi had the best thinking here: "Be the change that you want to see in the world"
    Communism, Democracy, Capitalist, Religious, Dictatorship: There is nothing inherently wrong with any of these systems, all can produce good results. It is the people factor and principles that go bad and as a consequence earn the system a good or bad reputation. A good King can do wonders for his kingdom and a bad King creates chaos. The same can be said of any of the other systems. The problem is power is a double edged sword, it cuts both ways. Power can be used for good or bad so it falls back on the individual for the systems success. If you are raising good children, then you will have good adults from which to choose good leaders.
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    May 21 2014: simple really; social as in socialist ideals of raising the lower class & supporting the poor. support is maintained through the leadership of the technocratic or more educated and thus more qualified, as to say leaders are not elected solely by democratic voting but through proven academic achievement. I've got ideas of low tech systems for fresh water, food & energy generation. so long as there is universal education that is accessible to the rich & destitute members of a society like this then genuine intelligence cannot be excluded from decision making.
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      May 23 2014: This form of governance has been done in several variations in the past and none worked well. It seems that once the "smarter" ones got in control, they found that they really didn't need to appreciate the "not so smart" and democracy sort of went out the window....
      Socialist ideals of raising the lower class and supporting the poor is a noble cause but the execution is the problem...Mankind can't seem to get it right. It has been done in small groups, but with large and diverse societies such as the USA, it is inconceivable....We can't even get the vast number of "smart" people to agree on the most simple problem...let alone how to help anyone out of anything.....
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    May 20 2014: I may seem like a fool when I say this but how about a social technocracy? or am I now evil?
  • May 18 2014: The problem here is, that it's all but impossible to use the term socialism without inspiring a knee-jerk image of a totalitarian government. I prefer to use "socialism" to mean any cooperative activity of an entire population. In this sense, all government is "socialism". Socialism has evolved because it greatly enhances suvival. The primary needs of an individual, or more properly, family group, are food, shelter, and security. In more complex cultures, the definition of basic needs becomes more complex. In any case, the primary purpose of government is to ensure that the governed are provided these basic needs. If an individual is left lacking for some basic need, then the "social contract" is broken and they must and are justified in ignoring the laws of that government, so as to survive. It would be wrong to put someone in jail for trying to survive. Their crime then becomes existence. It is a fundamental failure of government, if the care of those who are homeless and or starving, is left to the random kindness of, sometimes inefficient and or corrupt, charities. The citizen of any government would require a basic education, including a knowledge of that governments laws, to function in that society, therefore it is only logical, for a basic education to be freely provided to it's citizens. It would serve a society to provide advanced education or career education, but whether that is inherent to the fundamental "social contract", seems more open to discussion.
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      May 19 2014: Bradley,
      Again, I can only speak of my country, but I think that most countries offer some basic education programs for free to have their citizens as you mentioned have some knowledge of literacy, mathematics, government. But, does every one need to go to college? I know that in today's world we have modern technology that needs advanced education, but there is so much of our economy that is based on manual skills that are learned.... on the job or with focused trade schools.
      Free higher education? If it can be done, good. But, it should not be used to generate money to promote universities and leave students holding long term payments, as been done here.
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    May 17 2014: Mr. Sisco,
    I had previously posted that in my country, there are programs that help qualified college students with financial help. People justify this as a good thing as it has been demonstrated well educated students do well financially and provide more taxes back to the state. But,
    This practice has been perverted. It was proposed that all people should have an opportunity to attend college...after all our country has as many social purposes as any... It was decided to provide student loans for those who were not qualified for free tuition. All that was necessary was to be accepted by a college and be financially stressed.

    The results were that many students took these loans and entered college. Many didn't not complete the programs. Many completed the college programs but had obtained knowledge of subjects that had no commercial value.
    The end results was that these loans that are repayable exceed $1,000,000, 000,000. An amount that exceeds the total wealth of most countries in the world.

    Too many of these debtors will have gotten no commercial value from their education and be carrying these loans for life. So.... It has been said "The road to hell is paved with good intentions"

    A government that is "socially aware" can financially destroy it's citizens as it strives to be "socially aware"
  • May 10 2014: There is a Grandiose idea of HUMANDKIND RELINQUISHING THE USE OF MONEY. An idea that is surely firing through the Natural Mystic of the Spiritual Network of Conected Minds n Souls on Earth...Not only is it a good idea, it seems like the best idea, the simplest, the keenest, the most spiritual. What would Jesus Christ say? But as always the key is Unity. So TOTAL UNITY is key. World Wide at one time, We decide not to use money anymore and simply use our hearts and allow the Holy Spirit to lead us.

    When? Well every culture has the custom of having a New Year Resolution. The calling in of a New Beginning, a new chapter. So a new Year seems like the best time.New Years 2015 Maybe?

    With the internet and Technology it should be an easy task to organize this Epic Move. Since the Industrial Revolution, the World had and has the
    exponential ability to provide more than the basics for more than 10 times the current world population.

    When money and separatism is no longer an issue, Humankind will see leaps in technological advances that we never thought attainable in our lives. Without the use of money, all of Humanity (those that wish to) will live in a level of luxury, comfort, automation and abundance that not even the richest Elites alive now would ever see in 1000 years (asuming we stayed in a capitalist-slavalist system).

    Lets take it to math and universal logic. We know that the shortest distance between 2 points is a direct line.The shortest route to Heaven on Earth is also a direct line. The key lies in drawing a direct line which means just going there by simply manifesting the actions and reality of life at point two and We immediately create that seemingly impossible dream/goal of Utopi a - Heaven on Earth. This can be achieved only if We collectively realize it.

    Check out my Book Utopia or Death - http://www.amazon.com/Utopia-Death-C-Martins-R/dp/1105122638
    or Download a free digital copy https://archive.org/download/UtopiaOrDeath/6x9Ebook2012.pdf
    NAMASTE..
  • May 3 2014: Hi Dear Jorge,I prefer people to keep good from bad,we humanbeing the only and ultimate aim is to live a happy life.Be kind to everyone in this world,no skin,no race,no any biasis of religion,believing...suggesting:we live on the earth,we are connected,..be conscious of ourselves inner world..Keep Confucius's words:reflecting ourselves everyday...keep good,correct mistaks
  • Apr 30 2014: When I say poor people I refer to those who can not attend colleges becuase they are to expensive, and this is a general topic, I am not taking about USA, in Venezuela there are public and private colleges, public ones are better but it does not mean privates are bad... they are good too. I study civil engineering in a public college, it does not mean I have to be poor to study in a public one, but this college is really well recognised.
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    Apr 30 2014: Jorge, Are you speaking of the USA? If not then please give a example so that we may speak apples to apples and stop the needless guessing that is going on that only spawns arguments and gets us no where.

    The terms "poor people" gets beat up here in the USA ... are you are using it to apply to those who cannot afford to attend private colleges? ... do you mean lower education? ... Public schools? ... The term "FREE" also gets beat up ... there are no free lunches ... they are paid for somewhere by someone ... please explain FREE.

    Your answers may better focus this conversation in the direction you want it to go.
  • Apr 29 2014: That's called "morality".
  • Apr 28 2014: Well Hopefully in Venezuela colleges are free and they are pretty good by the way, it is really sad that we are going down economically because this government is doing things wrong, and I know it is really expensive create schools and colleges for free, but remember that Venezuela makes US$ 70.000 Million dollars per year,and our population is 30 millions. Money is not the problem here.... that's why I have this mentality of promoting free education for poor people..... And with that been said, I am totally opposition of my government in Venezuela, I know cuba is not the paradise.... I want you to stop thinking about ideologies and just think: you DO NOT HAVE TO BE COMMUNIST OR SOCIALIST to create a free education system...... And it does not have to be controlled by the government... As I said before! Colleges here are "Universidades Autónomas" which means "independent universities" the government just pay the budget and any college use that money to pay salaries, and others thing listed on the budget............ So I just noted some radicalism actitudes in some of you... I see the same thing on people from officialism here, just talking bad of the other systems....
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    Apr 28 2014: There is NO such thing as free education. It cost a lot of money to:
    1) build school buildings and other school facilities
    2) print books, workbooks, and other reference materials
    3) pay the salaries and wages of school administrators, teachers, and non-teaching school personnel

    However, there is TUITION-FREE education. Who pays for education? Responsible tax-payers and benevolent donors who believe in education. This should be made clear to every parent and student attending a tuition-free school. Why? So that they will appreciate the value of education.

    Is it any wonder that so many students squander their opportunity to acquire good education? Many of them think education is of little value because it is "FREE".

    The world will be a much better place if EVERYONE gets good education! This is true whether one lives in a democratic, socialist, communist, or xxxxxxist country.
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    Apr 26 2014: It is a nice thought but the two concepts are not compatible. Education is a societal, a social responsibility meant to serve the whole of the citizenry, not just the self-interested. Capitalism is all about exploiting opportunities for self-interested personal/corporate profit and/or personal advancement. The constant assault on Western educational institutions over the last 50 years stands as stark evidence of how ruthless the capitalist agenda has been on public education.

    Nor is there any marketable opportunity that the profit takers - least we forget that con artists, swindlers and most criminals are the lowest forms of profit takers - will not exploit and they have bought and/or supported the politicians that will also support their rapacious agendas. And students are just another exploitable market for these guys. .

    You might want to take a look at Cuba's free for all educational system and the world wide recognized literacy rate the country has enjoyed for decades along with an equal recognition of its world-widely recognized free for all health care system. In fact, Cuba's literacy rate and access to education exceeds that of virtually every capitalist nation in the world as does its extremely pro active health care.
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      Apr 27 2014: Yes, Cuba. Highly literate and healthy with those social goals achieved. And saved from those those damned Capitalist taking it all away from the people?? Oh, wait a minute, Cuba is one of the poorest countries in the world.

      In one consideration, a native of a tribe in a dense jungle may not realize he is uneducated formally and poor economically, He could think he is living life as it is meant to be.

      But, in Cube, people are literate and healthy and they know how good life could be and they are suppressed.
      In fact, thousands of them faced great dangers and hardships to flee Cuba and go to the pinnacle of Capitalist suppression by con artist, swindlers, and other forms of profit takers... Miami...
      makes you wonder.

      PS.... Profits aren't taken, they are made.
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        Apr 27 2014: sigh, it is easy to take cheap shots and toss around old prejudices. .But the intelligent know that all they have to do is check the numbers for themselves.
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          Apr 30 2014: Do you have a graph to go with those numbers?

          Lies damn lies and statistics.

          That MIchael Moore illusion of health care is a complete scam.

          The standard of living is raised by technology which is created through the foundation of private property and comparative advantage.
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        Apr 30 2014: you can easily google it just as I did. I suspect you will be most interested in the CIA stats but there are dozens of other more reputable organizations that also support the premise.
  • Apr 26 2014: If you want less redistribution then vote for the less-tax party. If you want more then vote more-tax. If you want the environment to benefit from redistribution then vote Green. 
  • Apr 26 2014: Jorge

    If you are speaking about America you have nothing to fret about. We are no longer a capitalist country.
    To your point, with refererence the old America. There was something called the Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights was not about rights that the government gave you it was about the government not being able to infringe upon your rights. Of these rights there was no right to an education, but you were free to achieve an education. It was called individual Freedom.
    For a government controlled educational system, as you suggest, then the government would control the cirriculum and the student and even the future of the student and in that the future of the society. That leads us to this quote from the Communist Party. "We must create out of the younger generation a generation of Communists. We must turn children, who can be shaped like wax, into real, good Communists.... We must remove the children from the crude influence of their families. We must take them over and, to speak frankly, nationalize them. From the first days of their lives they will be under the healthy influence of Communist children's nurseries and schools. There they will grow up to be real Communists"
    What you suggest in your opening is like being a little bit pregnant.
    • Apr 27 2014: Hi, I am from Venezuela, and think you got me wrong, communism is not what I meant... In Venezuela there are public colleges and private ones, and they exist since the start of 20th century, for that time we were a democracy and a productive country, I don't want you to think that I am communist or socialist, anyone has to work in order to get money an pay their bills, but living in a country like mine where the population is 80% poor and 19% middle class, you have to give then the tool of free education (not controlled by the goverment) public colleges here has their own autonomy, but the budget for every college comes from the state, private colleges are just like any private college in America, and public one are as good as privates here...