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Are Nordic Nations Socialist (Norway and Singapore)?
in Politics

By billbatardbillbatard 124 Pts edited March 27
When ever you site a successful example of Socialism the right does what the left does when you site an example that met with disaster "BUT THAT REALLY ISN'T SOCIALISM!" but doesn't that depend on your definition? I say Northern europe if you look at all the details taxes welfare spending labour laws state ownership co determination laws.. look pretty darned socialist to me.


The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

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  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1653 Pts
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    @billbatard

    This is what Lee Kuan Yew said, not me. I am telling you about Singapore's system, not about my personal views.

    I am not sure what your last sentence is supposed to mean; I could not translate it into English.
    Zombieguy1987



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  • Nordic nations are social-democracies with a mixed-economy system... As was pointed to me somewhere else, they do not have a "post-Capitalism" mindset like actual "socialism" does... Ask any swede or norwegian, you'll find that they're pretty attached to the notion of private property... 
    piloteer
    " Adversus absurdum, contumaciter ac ridens! "
  • @Plaffelvohfen ; I think Singapore also proves this point. In Singapore, the state owns 90 percent of the land and over 80 percent of the homes while posting high levels of income and growth. In Norway, the state owns 76 percent of the non-home wealth while also remaining very productive. Now imagine if you combined them.
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • The socialist umbrella contains within it diverse viewpoints about what socialism is, what its core elements are, and how to achieve it. Some emphasize firm-level worker ownership (i.e. cooperatives), others industry-level worker ownership (i.e. syndicalists), and still others society-wide ownership (i.e. social wealth fund advocates). Some think wages and salaries are problematic (e.g. mutualists), others think product prices are problematic (i.e decommodifiers), and still others think both are problematic and that society should be organized into small units that consume what they produce directly (e.g. in a Fourier commune).

    The one thing almost all strands have in common is the idea that collective ownership of capital within a relevant economic unit is a key socialist principle. So to the extent that a country is a relevant economic unit and Norwegians own 76% of their non-home wealth collectively through a democratically-elected state, it would be fair, I think, to describe it as the most socialist country in the developed world.

    But regardless of what label you apply to it, Norway at minimum proves that it is possible to mix high levels of state ownership with a high degree of prosperity. And no, this is not just about its oil: high levels of state ownership prevailed even before the oil fund began in 1996.

    As noted last week, I think Singapore also proves this point. In Singapore, the state owns 90 percent of the land and over 80 percent of the homes while posting high levels of income and growth. In Norway, the state owns 76 percent of the non-home wealth while also remaining very productive. Now imagine if you combined them.

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    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @Plaffelvohfenhe socialist umbrella contains within it diverse viewpoints about what socialism is, what its core elements are, and how to achieve it. Some emphasize firm-level worker ownership (i.e. cooperatives), others industry-level worker ownership (i.e. syndicalists), and still others society-wide ownership (i.e. social wealth fund advocates). Some think wages and salaries are problematic (e.g. mutualists), others think product prices are problematic (i.e decommodifiers), and still others think both are problematic and that society should be organized into small units that consume what they produce directly (e.g. in a Fourier commune).

    The one thing almost all strands have in common is the idea that collective ownership of capital within a relevant economic unit is a key socialist principle. So to the extent that a country is a relevant economic unit and Norwegians own 76% of their non-home wealth collectively through a democratically-elected state, it would be fair, I think, to describe it as the most socialist country in the developed world.

    But regardless of what label you apply to it, Norway at minimum proves that it is possible to mix high levels of state ownership with a high degree of prosperity. And no, this is not just about its oil: high levels of state ownership prevailed even before the oil fund began in 1996.

    As noted last week, I think Singapore also proves this point. In Singapore, the state owns 90 percent of the land and over 80 percent of the homes while posting high levels of income and growth. In Norway, the state owns 76 percent of the non-home wealth while also remaining very productive. Now imagine if you combined them.  https://www.peoplespolicyproject.org/2018/03/14/the-state-owns-76-of-norways-non-home-wealth/

    Plaffelvohfen
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @Plaffelvohfenhe socialist umbrella contains within it diverse viewpoints about what socialism is, what its core elements are, and how to achieve it. Some emphasize firm-level worker ownership (i.e. cooperatives), others industry-level worker ownership (i.e. syndicalists), and still others society-wide ownership (i.e. social wealth fund advocates). Some think wages and salaries are problematic (e.g. mutualists), others think product prices are problematic (i.e decommodifiers), and still others think both are problematic and that society should be organized into small units that consume what they produce directly (e.g. in a Fourier commune).

    The one thing almost all strands have in common is the idea that collective ownership of capital within a relevant economic unit is a key socialist principle. So to the extent that a country is a relevant economic unit and Norwegians own 76% of their non-home wealth collectively through a democratically-elected state, it would be fair, I think, to describe it as the most socialist country in the developed world.

    But regardless of what label you apply to it, Norway at minimum proves that it is possible to mix high levels of state ownership with a high degree of prosperity. And no, this is not just about its oil: high levels of state ownership prevailed even before the oil fund began in 1996.

    As noted last week, I think Singapore also proves this point. In Singapore, the state owns 90 percent of the land and over 80 percent of the homes while posting high levels of income and growth. In Norway, the state owns 76 percent of the non-home wealth while also remaining very productive. Now imagine if you combined them.  https://www.peoplespolicyproject.org/2018/03/14/the-state-owns-76-of-norways-non-home-wealth/

    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1653 Pts
    edited March 26
    Socialism refers to nationalized means of production; capitalism refers to a free market economy with strong property rights. Means of production are not nationalized in any of the European countries, and every country that has ever attempted it quickly became an economical wreck.

    In many ways, Northern European countries are more capitalist than the US or the UK, as they have far fewer regulations, and their federal government is much weaker, with a lot of power held by municipalities.

    Nordic nations are so prosperous because the capitalist economy funds the social spending. Cuba or Venezuela are so miserable because their socialist economies cannot afford the social spending. It is as simple as that. There is nothing wrong with pointing out that socialist economies always fail, with no exception, because that is what the facts say. What is wrong is what socialist proponents like to do, first getting all excited about a new socialist country, and then, a couple decades later, when its economy collapses, suddenly stopping calling it socialist.

    On the capitalist side, there is no such consistent hypocrisy. I do not think many capitalists say that capitalist economies always succeed; it is not so. Capitalist rules is a necessary condition for the economical success of the nation, but it is hardly the sufficient condition. Capitalist rules do not mean much when nobody follows them. In Russia in 90-s, or in Iraq in 2000s, formally the economies were capitalist; practically, however, mafia and military groups respectively ruled everything and enforced their own unofficial rules, that were far from capitalist.

    Finally, regarding Singapore, harsh land distribution laws are the only anti-capitalist aberration they have there, and it is dictated by the necessity of having to harbor a lot of people on a very small territory. They do not have the luxury of millions square kilometers of wilderness ready to be settled that we here in the US do, hence they have to make certain concessions.
    It is not a good model to follow, and it is the main reason Singapore has some of the most overpriced real estate in the world. If their entire economy worked in this mode, Singapore would feature the same quality of life as Bangladesh or Laos.
    Zombieguy1987Gooberry
  • @MayCaesar your definition leaves a lot to be desired you try to simplify something very complex
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • I don't think Singapore is Nordic.

    Moreover socialism is defined as a system where the means of production are owned by the community as a whole and people are rewarded based on the labour they contribute. Though there are taxes, government agencies and co-operatives in Norway, Finland, Sweden etc there are also stock markets, privately owned companies and investors who get paid based on the amount of capital they invest in a business rather than the labour they contribute.

    This is typically viewed as a type of mixed-market economy, specifically social democracy rather than democratic socialism which despite having similar words involved is fundamentally different.
    K_Michaelpiloteer
  • @Ampersand ; The theoretical system of socialism with Chinese characteristics (Chinese: 中国特色社会主义; pinyinZhōngguó tèsè shèhuìzhǔyì, literally zhōngguó tèsè, meaning "Chinese characteristics"; and shèhuì zhǔyì meaning "socialism")[1] is a broad term for political theories and policies that are seen by their proponents as representing Marxism–Leninism adapted to Chinese circumstances and specific time periods. For instance, in this view Xi Jinping Thought is considered to represent Marxist–Leninist policies suited for China's present condition while Deng Xiaoping Theory was considered relevant for the period when it was formulated.[2]

    The term entered common usage during the era of Deng Xiaoping and was largely associated with Deng's overall program of adopting elements of market economics as a means to foster growth using foreign investment and to increase productivity (especially in the countryside where 80% of China's population lived) while the Communist Party of China retained both its formal commitment to achieve communism and its monopoly on political power.[3] In the party's official narrative, socialism with Chinese characteristics is Marxism–Leninism adapted to Chinese conditions and a product of scientific socialism. The theory stipulated that China was in the primary stage of socialism due to its relatively low level of material wealth and needed to engage in economic growth before it pursued a more egalitarian form of socialism, which in turn would lead to a communist society described in Marxist orthodoxy.

    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @Ampersand @Ampersand ; The theoretical system of socialism with Chinese characteristics (Chinese: 中国特色社会主义; pinyinZhōngguó tèsè shèhuìzhǔyì, literally zhōngguó tèsè, meaning "Chinese characteristics"; and shèhuì zhǔyì meaning "socialism")[1] is a broad term for political theories and policies that are seen by their proponents as representing Marxism–Leninism adapted to Chinese circumstances and specific time periods. For instance, in this view Xi Jinping Thought is considered to represent Marxist–Leninist policies suited for China's present condition while Deng Xiaoping Theory was considered relevant for the period when it was formulated.[2]

    The term entered common usage during the era of Deng Xiaoping and was largely associated with Deng's overall program of adopting elements of market economics as a means to foster growth using foreign investment and to increase productivity (especially in the countryside where 80% of China's population lived) while the Communist Party of China retained both its formal commitment to achieve communism and its monopoly on political power.[3] In the party's official narrative, socialism with Chinese characteristics is Marxism–Leninism adapted to Chinese conditions and a product of scientific socialism. The theory stipulated that China was in the primary stage of socialism due to its relatively low level of material wealth and needed to engage in economic growth before it pursued a more egalitarian form of socialism, which in turn would lead to a communist society described in Marxist orthodoxy.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberal_socialism

    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liberal_socialismLiberal socialism is a socialist political philosophy that incorporates liberal principles.[1] Liberal socialism does not have the goal of completely abolishing capitalism and replacing it with socialism,[2] but it instead supports a mixed economy that includes both private property and social ownership in capital goods.[3][4] Although liberal socialism unequivocally favors a market-based economy, it identifies legalistic and artificial monopolies to be the fault of capitalism[5] and opposes an entirely unregulated economy.[6] It considers both liberty and equality to be compatible and mutually dependent on each other.[1]@Ampersand
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialist_market_economy @Ampersand ; The socialist market economy (SME) is the economic system and model of economic development employed in the People's Republic of China. The system is based on the predominance of public ownership and state-owned enterprises within a market economy.[1] The term "socialist market economy" was first used during the 14th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 1992 to describe the goal of China's economic reforms. Originating in the Chinese economic reforms initiated in 1978 that integrated China into the global market economy, the socialist market economy represents a preliminary or "primary stage" of developing socialism.[2] Despite this, many Western commentators have described the system as a form of state capitalism.[3][4][5]
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • The primary stage of socialism (sometimes referred to as the preliminary stage of socialism),[1] introduced into official discourse by Mao Zedong as the initial stage of socialism, is a sub-theory of Chinese Marxist thought which explains why capitalist techniques are used in the Chinese economy.@Ampersand
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @Ampersand ;

    How Capitalist Is Singapore Really?  It is true of course that Singapore has a market economy. But it’s also true that, in Singapore, the state owns a huge amount of the means of production. In fact, depending on how you count it, the Singaporean government probably owns more capital than any other developed country in the world after Norway.

    The Singaporean state owns 90 percent of the country’s land. Remarkably, this level of ownership was not present from the beginning. In 1949, the state owned just 31 percent of the country’s land. It got up to 90 percent land ownership through decades of forced sales, or what people in the US call eminent domain.

    The Singaporean state does not merely own the land. They directly develop it, especially for residential purposes. Over 80 percent of Singapore’s population lives in housing constructed by the country’s public housing agency HDB. The Singaporean government claims that around 90 percent of people living in HDB units “own” their home. But the way it really works is that, when a new HDB unit is built, the government sells a transferable 99-year lease for it. The value of that lease slowly declines as it approaches the 99-year mark, after which point the lease expires and possession of the HDB unit reverts back to the state. Thus, Singapore is a land where almost everyone is a long-term public housing tenant.

    Then there are the state-owned enterprises, which they euphemistically call Government-linked Companies (GLCs). Through its sovereign wealth fund Temasek, the Singaporean government owns a large share (20% or more) of 20 companies (2012 figure). Together these companies make up 37% of the market capitalization of the Singaporean stock market. The state also owns a large share of 8 real estate investment trust (REIT) companies (2012 figure), which they call GLREITs. The value of the GLREITs make up 54% of the country’s total REIT market.

    The sovereign wealth fund Temasek doesn’t just own domestic assets. It also is invested broadly throughout the world, especially in other Asian countries. In March of last year, Temasek had a net portfolio value of S$275 billion, which is equal to around 62% of the country’s annual GDP. To put this figure in more familiar terms, Temasek’s total holdings are equivalent to if the US government built a $12.4 trillion wealth fund.

    Call me old-fashioned, but I don’t generally associate state ownership of the means of production with capitalism. One way to see whether libertarians or conservatives actually think Singapore’s system is uber-capitalistic is to imagine how they would respond to someone who ran a campaign in the US aimed at bringing the country up to the Singaporean ideal.

    In this campaign, the candidate would say that the state should expropriate nearly all of the land in the country, build virtually all of the housing in the country, move almost everyone into public housing leaseholds, become the largest shareholder of more than a third of the country’s publicly-traded companies (weighted by market capitalization), and build out a sovereign wealth fund that holds tens of trillions of dollars of corporate assets. Would this campaign meet with a warm libertarian embrace or perhaps be derided as a bit socialistic?

    The case of Singapore is more than just a funny gotcha to use against right-wingers. It actually raises an interesting question about what it is people care about when it comes to “capitalism” and “socialism.” Is capitalism primarily about markets or private ownership? Relatedly, is socialism primarily about ending markets or promoting collective ownership? Often these things are bundled together, but they are logically and practically separable. Singapore (and Norway, among others) shows that it is quite possible to collectively own the means of production while also using price systems to assist in the allocation of productive factors. This is what market socialists have been saying for a hundred years.    https://www.peoplespolicyproject.org/2018/03/09/how-capitalist-is-singapore-really/

    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • K_MichaelK_Michael 67 Pts
    edited March 27
    Singapore isn't "Nordic," because Nordic refers to a specific geographical location, not a form of government.
    Norway, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, and Denmark are the only Nordic countries.
    "We're all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." 
  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1653 Pts
    Singapore is also a dictatorship. It is a country in which criticising the government is punished by incarceration. In which the former leader called its inhabitants "dogs" that must be kept on a leash and put down whenever needed.

    You cannot expect a country like this to not have a significant degree of nationalisation; it is the only way it can keep its population in check and avoid losing competition to the private sector.
    You can, however, expect a country like this ruled by a very progressive and rational government to have policies that, to a strong degree, separate the public sector from the private sector, leaving the latter be for the most part. As far as the private sector goes, which is to thank for Singapore's unprecedented economical leap, the real estate market is the only one that is tightly regulated, to my knowledge - and it is also the only one which constantly fails to deliver, featuring sky-high costs, tiny apartments and poor liquidity.
    Zombieguy1987
  • Singapore is not a dictatorship they hold elections, and i doubt the leader of the nation said people were dogs to be put on leashes but if he had he would be correct people need to be controlled they are children, even asians which are smart and virtuous are still in need of control and thats part of their culture@MayCaesar
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1653 Pts
    @billbatard

    You should think a few steps ahead. North Korea also has elections; it does not mean anything, when the information space is completely controlled by the government (as is the case in Singapore, where the mass media are heavily censored by the state).

    His point was actually that Chinese are NOT smart and virtuous, and that is why they must be controlled by force, because they are incapable of controlling themselves.

    I think you should research the history and politics of Singapore a bit more.
    Zombieguy1987
  • @MayCaesar How many chinese do you know? they work hard and commit less crime than white devils . THERE is not virtue in the libertine degenerate caucasion life style your culture is dieing
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @K_Michael you are correct that was a mistake singapore is another state directed model based on collective ownership of resources
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • @MayCaesar i admire that man, but then again i admire mussolini and tito
    The passion for destruction is also a creative passion. Mikhail Bakunin

  • MayCaesarMayCaesar 1653 Pts
    @billbatard

    Mussolini and Tito ruined their countries long-term. Lee Kuan Yew made Singapore from one of the poorest into one of the richest nations on Earth instead.

    I do not like dictators, but at the same time I give them credit where it is due. However, I hardly advocate for the Singaporean model. That model worked for Singapore, but it would hardly work for Western people who are not used to bowing to the authority unconditionally.
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