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Defending communism in arguments with cappies

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Soviet cogitations: 1
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 26 May 2012, 03:13
New Comrade (Say hi & be nice to me!)
Post 26 May 2012, 03:20
Alright, so I'm not a very great debater. I consider myself to be a M-L communist but never know how to provide the best rebuttal to these questions without going into a detailed explanation that the person I'm arguing against likely wont even understand. Anyone have any suggestions for short and simple rebuttals to some of the following argumentative questions/statements that are commonly used by cappies?

Main arguments I hear against communism:

"What would stop someone from seizing power (without the use of violence) as in communist states in the past?"

"If people get rewarded equally for working and not working, what incentive will the most lazy people have to work?"

"Why don't I deserve to own anything?"

"Without money, how would the value of items be determined?"

"What would stop people from mooching off of the system?"

"What makes communism any better than other failed government systems such as socialism?"

"When you take away my right to choose what I buy, everything that everyone has becomes uniform and the same. Look at the USSR where you couldn't choose what types of things to buy and everyone simply had to buy the same thing. If everyone has to be the same, how can anyone be unique?"

"If everyone is the same, how will people value themselves as important in society when everyone else shares the same status?"

"How would communism be democratic? It's either democratic or un-democratic. If un-democratic, then what would make it any more effective than a dictatorship?"

"If communism was democratic, how would you keep people in the minority from being oppressed due to mob mentality?"

"Why should I have to pay for somebody else's life when I have nothing to gain from it myself?"

"Why should people accept the lack of personal choices caused by communism in comparison to other systems such as socialism and capitalism?"

"Why haven't communist governments worked in the past?"

"In very large populations, who will keep things from getting out of control in times of communism? IF there are elected people, then wont that create different classes of people? If not, then my first question remains."

"What would stop war and conflict from breaking out in times of communism?"

"What will stop people from rebelling against and overthrowing a communist government without the use of violence?"

"Why shouldn't I be able to start my own small business as long as I run it ethically?"

"Who will be in charge of the distribution of services? Wont the people who do this be in a position of power? If not, then why not?"

While some of these questions are a little easier to handle than others, I often have a lot of trouble answering these questions in debates? Can anyone answer these for me please? Thanks!
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Soviet cogitations: 111
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 31 Dec 2011, 06:02
Pioneer
Post 26 May 2012, 20:15
I'll try and answer a few. I've seen many of these before.
Quote:
"Why shouldn't I be able to start my own small business as long as I run it ethically?"
The question of ethics doesn't really matter. Firstly, what is an "ethical" way to run a company? The exploitation of labor is a part of capitalism and is what leads to profits, so unless the capitalist didn't want to really make any profit, then he would have to run the company "unethically".
Quote:
"What will stop people from rebelling against and overthrowing a communist government without the use of violence?"
Not sure I understand this one. Was the person asking what would happen if people wanted to rebel against communist society? If so, I think that's ridiculous. You don't see any feudalists running around and protesting.
Quote:
"What would stop war and conflict from breaking out in times of communism?"
I don't know, maybe the lack of countries to go war with eachother?
Quote:
"In very large populations, who will keep things from getting out of control in times of communism? IF there are elected people, then wont that create different classes of people? If not, then my first question remains."
From what I've been learning, communist society would probably feature an armed society to keep order. All decisions are made democratically by the people. This will not create any classes. In Socialism, when the state is supposed to still exist, I remember hearing an interesting idea that political workers would never be paid more than skilled workers.
Quote:
"Why haven't communist governments worked in the past?"
Various degrees of isolation, state-capitalism and the general revision or perversion of Marxist doctrine.
Quote:
"Why should people accept the lack of personal choices caused by communism in comparison to other systems such as socialism and capitalism?"
Ridiculous. Lack of personal choices? You have control over your life for the first time! You bow to no king, country or boss.
Quote:
"Why should I have to pay for somebody else's life when I have nothing to gain from it myself?"
I don't know. Why should you? This isn't a part of communism, you aren't paying anyone for the betterment of their lives.
Quote:
"If communism was democratic, how would you keep people in the minority from being oppressed due to mob mentality?"
Watch out everybody, mob mentality. Chances are, whoever asked you this wasn't thinking of real minorities, who I doubt the general public would have much quarrel with. The person you were talking to probably meant rich people.
Quote:
"How would communism be democratic? It's either democratic or un-democratic. If un-democratic, then what would make it any more effective than a dictatorship?"
It's not "undemocratic" it is very much so democratic. The people plan their society out and that's it.
Quote:
"If everyone is the same, how will people value themselves as important in society when everyone else shares the same status?"
Everybody is not the same, everybody is treated like a human being and their labour is their own. If money is the only thing that can tell you that you are an individual, than there's a serious problem going on.
Quote:
"When you take away my right to choose what I buy, everything that everyone has becomes uniform and the same. Look at the USSR where you couldn't choose what types of things to buy and everyone simply had to buy the same thing. If everyone has to be the same, how can anyone be unique?"
It's important to note that the USSR was state-capitalist, and the state planned the economy, not the workers. This often led to lackluster products. In communism, you and your fellow comrades decide what you are going to make. So why wouldn't you make anything unique?
Quote:
"What makes communism any better than other failed government systems such as socialism?"
"Failed" Firstly, ask were Socialism has failed, not just statecapitalist nonsense. Secondly, communism is the natural evolution of socialism, and it's fairly obvious if you do any research that living standards skyrocket from socialism to communism.
Quote:
"What would stop people from mooching off of the system?"
Mooch police. I'm not sure what technology will be developed by the time we would get to communism, but I'm sure there are even ways today of tracking such stuff.
Quote:
"Without money, how would the value of items be determined?"
How does money determine the value of things on its own? We determine value using Marx's LTV.
Quote:
"If people get rewarded equally for working and not working, what incentive will the most lazy people have to work?"
Since when do you get rewarded for not working? "He who does not work neither shall he eat."
Quote:
"What would stop someone from seizing power (without the use of violence) as in communist states in the past?"
Zombie Lenin. No, I really don't see the point of "seizing" any power in communism. Also, I highly doubt your fellow comrades will let you do that.
I might not completely solid on all of these, but that's just my brief take on it.
Soviet cogitations: 53
Defected to the U.S.S.R.: 29 Jan 2012, 02:34
Pioneer
Post 04 Jun 2012, 23:49
Quote:
"If people get rewarded equally for working and not working, what incentive will the most lazy people have to work?"


People are not rewarded "equally," but based on their abilities and according to their needs. As a common counter-example, a doctor would still receive more then a janitor under a socialist economic system as a result of their abilities being very different, and no doubt more difficult.

Quote:
"What makes communism any better than other failed government systems such as socialism?"


socialism didn't fail. Socialism, far from the perfect system that it was, went through ups and downs throughout the 20th century.

Quote:
"When you take away my right to choose what I buy, everything that everyone has becomes uniform and the same. Look at the USSR where you couldn't choose what types of things to buy and everyone simply had to buy the same thing. If everyone has to be the same, how can anyone be unique?"


The system the USSR possessed was known as state-capitalism. What's more, soviet citizens weren't forced to buy all of the same goods as everybody else.

The latter argument is rendered defunct by my above statement.

Quote:
"If everyone is the same, how will people value themselves as important in society when everyone else shares the same status?"


Another common misconception about soviet socialism. Not everybody was "the same," just as much as they were allegedly forced to buy all of the same consumer goods.

Quote:
"How would communism be democratic?


Past attempts at socialist construction put too much emphasis on centralized economies and government. An ideal socialist society would decentralized all or most aspects of society, whether economic or governmental.

Quote:
"Why should I have to pay for somebody else's life when I have nothing to gain from it myself?"


Simple, uncaring capitalist logic at its best.

What you have to gain, socially, is immediate gratification that you helped your fellow countrymen in society succeed. Schools, hospitals, etc. will continue to run furthermore as long as you pay your taxes under a socialist society. Under socialism, such selfish logic quoted above will be condemned, and probably will have been made irrelevant over time as people change along with society's new direction under socialism.

Quote:
"Why shouldn't I be able to start my own small business as long as I run it ethically?"


As long as you are hiring workers, you are participating in exploitation. It doesn't matter how "ethical" you are.

Quote:
"Who will be in charge of the distribution of services? Wont the people who do this be in a position of power? If not, then why not?"


democratic, decentralized workers' councils will decide what gets produced or distributed. This effectively limits an attempt at a possible abuse of power.
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