Brad Wardell's views about technology, politics, religion, world affairs, and all sorts of politically incorrect topics.
Published on January 15, 2008 By Draginol In Blogging

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Since the end of the Korean war, the two halves of the Korean peninsula have be free to pursue their own destiny. Communist North Korea pursued a centrally planned socialistic economy. South Korea pursued a capitalistic free market economy.

So next time you're asked whether you support government run health care or other centrally planned initiatives, ask yourself how dark you want it to get? A little bit of socialism is like a little bit of death.


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on Jan 15, 2008
So next time you're asked whether you support government run health care or other centrally planned initiatives, ask yourself how dark you want it to get? A little bit of socialism is like a little bit of death.


That's very melodramatic, but there aren't many countries considering a little bit of socialism who are likely to become international pariahs unable to trade outside the communist bloc.

Who knows how North Korea would have ended up if it wasn't locked down under trade sanctions? You may as well say a little bit of capitalism is bad because Iraq failed under Saddam - it too was crippled by a lack of international trade despite being reasonably capitalist.

The two economic models perform very different functions - capitalist infrastructure produces wealth, socialist infrastructure maintains social order. One without the other is wasteful and sure to end in disaster.

But regardless of how perfect your economic system is, if you lack access to essential materials (whether through trade or dominating an entire landmass a la the US, EU or Australia) you're never going to be a success.
on Jan 15, 2008
*gah my socialist lefty brain can't figure out the image link to the picture I wanted*
on Jan 15, 2008
Oh yes, if North Korea had access to materials it would be a paradise.  Sure, it's right next to China, but let's ignore that.
on Jan 15, 2008
Oh yes, if North Korea had access to materials it would be a paradise. Sure, it's right next to China, but let's ignore that.


I'm not trying to say it was a paradise, but it's unfair to say that it was 'free to pursue its own destiny'. It was free within quite set limits, firstly that it not piss off its patron, China, and secondly that it trade with no one else but China.

Socialism isn't all about loving your brother - China exploited the hell out of North Korea. It really didn't stand a chance, although as I said before its choice of a pure socialist system was highly unlikely to work.

If you're going to say that North Korea and South Korea shared equal opportunities after their enforced split, then I don't see why I shouldn't call you out on it. There are lots of good arguments for capitalism. Why build one on an extremely shaky foundation?
on Jan 15, 2008
If you're going to say that North Korea and South Korea shared equal opportunities after their enforced split, then I don't see why I shouldn't call you out on it.


Name a single problem North Korea had that was not caused by its own government or its two communist "allies".
on Jan 15, 2008

Who knows how North Korea would have ended up if it wasn't locked down under trade sanctions?

Appologists love to make excuses.

Quality is the trump to trade sanctions.  If they made anything that anyone wanted, it would find a way around trade sanctions (Oil for Food anyone?????).  The simple fact is they dont make anything that anyone wants.  Or even grow enough food to feed their people! (How do you explain that one?).

Melodramatic?  Perhaps.  Or just a large exclamation point on a very good example.  But then you go buy some carbon credits.  To the faithful of the religion of socialism, no one can debate their god as they are not listening.

on Jan 15, 2008

But then you go buy some carbon credits.


Turns out the cause of global warming is too much ink in pens.
on Jan 15, 2008
Turns out the cause of global warming is too much ink in pens.


Good thing I only use pencils.
on Jan 15, 2008
Answer: as little as possible please
on Jan 15, 2008
If they made anything that anyone wanted, it would find a way around trade sanctions (Oil for Food anyone?????). The simple fact is they dont make anything that anyone wants. Or even grow enough food to feed their people! (How do you explain that one?)



Don't forget trade goes both ways.

Cuba makes sugar, medical and tobacco products and services which are popular on international markets. But due to trade sanctions they can't import much in the way of technological supplies. They don't drive 1950s era cars out of an appreciation for the style of the time - they can't actually buy many new vehicles or machinery from anyone.

Melodramatic? Perhaps. Or just a large exclamation point on a very good example. But then you go buy some carbon credits. To the faithful of the religion of socialism, no one can debate their god as they are not listening.


Huh? Why would buying carbon credits change my mind about the usefulness of incorporating a little socialism into any society?

We all agree that some services should be socialised - the military, the police, roads, taxation and probably other things two. We're really only arguing about the extras. So of course I'm going to think it melodramatic to say "A little bit of socialism is like a little bit of death."

A little bit of socialism is just good sense. The question is really whether or not a lot of socialism is death. And I agree that it's not a good idea. However, North Korea is not a good example of a socialist state, if only because it hasn't had the same opportunities as other states. China is a good example, particularly when you consider that the country is undergoing a shift towards a capitalist dictatorship model. They prove that pure socialism was a failure; if it wasn't they wouldn't be changing.
on Jan 16, 2008
Cuba makes sugar, medical and tobacco products and services which are popular on international markets. But due to trade sanctions they can't import much in the way of technological supplies. They don't drive 1950s era cars out of an appreciation for the style of the time - they can't actually buy many new vehicles or machinery from anyone.


I can make the best damn widget in the world. But if no one wants them, I am not going to sell many. Cuba makes somethings, but other than their cigars, none are irreplaceable, or that good. If you do not have anything to trade, no one is going to try to evade sanctions to trade with you. You just proved my point. It is not the trade sanctions that hurt NK, it is the fact they dont have anything that anyone wants.
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