Archived Which -ism are you and why?

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Leen

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I like to know what the general population of MH is leaning towards.

1. How world works? Do you prefer Socialism, or Communism, or Capitalism?

2. What about personal take on these values?
Egalitarianism
Altruism
Egoism
Consequentialism
Utilitarianism

Is it too deep for you? I have provided wiki links to all the terminologies just in case you don't know what they mean.

Anyway, even if you do not have an -ism, tell me what you believe in generally. Democratic world? Or pure monarchy? Or even theocracy.

Discuss away.
 

PaperYomiko

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Great topic, Leen! :thumbs

First of all, I believe in capitalism; though not perfect, I think it's the best economic and social system we've got. It's been a long time since I took economics though, so I'm not going to pretend I know what I'm talking about and go into details :paperbag

In general, though, I'm a very idealistic and liberal person. So of the values you listed, egalitarianism and altruism are absolutely the most important to me, and are very central to my own way of thinking. I do honestly believe that all people are equal in this world, and every society should work to respect and preserve that equality. I also believe this is an essential quality to any truly free society - both in law and in social mentality.

Altruism is something that has always been stressed as being essential in my family, and is something that I have always been very concerned with. I do believe that we all have a moral obligation to strive not only for our own happiness, but for that of everyone around us as well. My belief in altruism has become even stronger since being very influenced by Buddhist philosophy, and it's probably the strongest principle by which I live my own life ^^

As for the others, although they are not values or ideas which are central to my own life, I do find them interesting, so I'll come back to discuss those later - too tired at the moment :amuse
 

rykarreolacr

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I chose capitalism over communism and socialism. History teaches us that even tough "theoretically" socialism is the best economic system, it proves practically impossible to apply in real life. The reason is simple, i don't think it's fair that if I study all my life and work hard I should get the same that someone who barely works and doesn't study gets. I believe that we all should have the opportunity to rise above thanks to our hard work and perseverance.
Besides, the only happy people in communist and socialist countries are the leaders since they live like kings doing everything which regular people in said countries can't.

In terms of the second question I would chose "Psychological egoism" since I believe that people are mostly inherently bad, and therefore always tend to look for personal gain. I wish it would be true that good actions lead to good things and that bad actions lead to bad thins for the person who does them... but this only happens in Hollywood movies. In real life , usually good things happen to bad people.
 

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For the first one, definately capitalism. Why?? Everyone who has used socialism or communism as their belief were all taken down, meaning that both socialism and communism has serious faults in them which didn't allow them to 'work' properly.

The second one... Probably 'Psychological Egoism'. I believe that people who help other people are the ones being manipulated, and are the ones that actually need help themselves. So if you just rely on yourself, then you'll be the one that gets all the benefits.
 

Leen

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There is a line that I read in a book. It is really funny but true.
Georges Clemenceau said:
Any man who is not a socialist at age 20 has no heart.

Any man who is still a socialist at age 40 has no head.
 

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Another topic I think would be better off in World Topics, but that's ok.

I go for Egalitarianism because I believe that every person should have the freedom of choice to do anything they want to do with their life as long as it doesn't directly threaten the lives of others.

Also Altruism, because the world would be far better off if everybody had a generous soul.

Though I think there is always a bit of egoism involved in things we do. "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," that sort of thing, but that's just a subconscious desire. We can't help that. It's part of our survival instincts.

Consequentialism, I disagree with, though. There will always be situations where people will bite the hand that feeds them.

But if people are overly concerned about that sort of thing, they aren't generous people to begin with - they're just trying to make life easier for themselves. But life doesn't work that way - even if you try your best, life will always throw you a curve ball. So why not be a good soul? We all die eventually, anyway. Live your life as an example to others and in doing so you make the world a much better place for future generations.

Utilitarianism is overrated IMO. The ends justify the means - that doesn't mean you always know what the ends will be like - and sometimes the ends can be more disastrous than you ever realized. People are guessing in the dark most of the time when they live according to this philosophy, and they'll be frustrated more often than not - and they will probably die never truly feeling like they did the right things. For that reason I certainly don't envy politicians at all, and I would never want to be one - at least not without God on my side and giving me the wisdom to be able to understand the right thing to do.

I chose capitalism over communism and socialism. History teaches us that even tough "theoretically" socialism is the best economic system, it proves practically impossible to apply in real life. The reason is simple, i don't think it's fair that if I study all my life and work hard I should get the same that someone who barely works and doesn't study gets. I believe that we all should have the opportunity to rise above thanks to our hard work and perseverance.
Besides, the only happy people in communist and socialist countries are the leaders since they live like kings doing everything which regular people in said countries can't.
As for capitalism, totally agree with rykarreolacr to a T here.
 

hikachi

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My friend ever said that I'm a libertarian... I believe on the concept of free will and I also think that everyone is free to decide, free to have choices upon their own life. I, myself think that yeah... I do what I want to do, as long as I like it and no one is bothered by it (or at least not show it directly to me), it's fine for me...

Therefore, I choose capitalism over socialism and communism, since that's what actually happen in the world. It's capitalism that work all over the world,

Altruism and Egoism actually the same for me... since both of them based on "personal gain" or "personal aim" it's just work differently... But well, I'm more into egoism since altruism isn't suit me well... I'm kind of an opportunist that will do anything to fulfill my own wish no matter what, even if that means I'm using the closest person with me. Does that mean I'm an egalitarian or egoist person? LOL... anyway.. I'm not really into any -ism or -cracy (democracy, theocracy, or else)
 

jerger

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buddhism:)

"as long as the skies exist
as long as their are sentient beings
may i remain
to relive them of their pain"

dalai lama
 

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1. Capitalism but not the pure one. I think governement needs to interfere when the situations is bad for people. Not to offend the americains, but as a belgian/european we can be happy we have a better social security (that costs more for us) than america. So I prefer a social-capitalism

2. Not the first three: egalitarism (is an utopia, sorry but all people are equal in nature, in law, in socitey, etc... There are strong ones and weak ones, how hard it may be), Altruism and egoism (are too far for me, if you would have say individualism and collectivism then I would have considered. Altruism is an extreme form where the individu should sacrifice too much to the collectivity, while egoism is an extreme of the opposite)
I prefer consqualism above utilitarism, I think a moral good consequence jusitfies the action/cause to it BUT what's moral good can differ from society to society, from person to person. BUT as a stated above people aren't equal and it depends on yourself if you agree or disagree...
 

Leen

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I won't say equate altruism to egoism simply because egoism is more about self gain while altruism is about doing things selflessly.

Example of egoism:
I study hard to get into Yale.

Example of altruism:
I just study hard. If I get into Yale, then so be it.
 

miyi

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[1] I believe in Capitalism, with an element of Socialism..........I believe Communism is good only in theory, however in practice, it's incompatible with how the world really works. There's ample evidence of Communist leaders, i.e. Stalin, Mao, who ended up as cruel dictators.....whenever you give the government full control of politics, social and economy, the leaders tend to become corrupt, and which is why Communism will never work....so you need a way to balance power, so that corruption is minimized.

ideally I prefer capitalism because it gives everyone incentive to work hard and earn what they've worked for...........I also prefer a capitalist system with some mild form of socialism, but not too much to the point where the government is giving free handouts to the poor, because this, too, can be problematic.....it will spoil people and deprive people of incentive to work hard, therefore people will become lazy and overly dependent on the government.


A welfare state (socialist) is good, but only to the point of guiding the unemployed back to stable economic situations........and not too excessive as to spoil them by giving them free money.

[2]

Egalitarianism - while I do believe that we are all humans and we all have the right to being treated equally by the government, I don't necessarily think that we are all "equal", in every sense of the word.

In truth, some are more superior than others.

example, in physical terms, I think Michael Jordan will kick my ass in basketball. Therefore I think he is superior -- it's simply fact, and there's no denying that.

intellectual superiority/inferiority...........there's some who are smarter, and dumber...it's reality....let's face it.

etc. etc.

but in moral terms, while I think everyone are "not equal", we still need to treat each other as if we were all equal.

Some are rich and some are poor, it's just the way life works............but I think I have a human right to be treated fairly by the government, as the government will treat a more priviledged caste/class...

Altruism

well, normally I'm pretty selfish, especially with strangers....

i.e. if a homeless guy asks me for some change, typically I'll only give him something, if I'm not "broke"....

when it comes to people I know and love, I'm more altruistic....

instinctively if my brother needs an organ, i.e. a liver, I'll voluntarily give up my spare organ....and it's not because I will benefit from it and be considered a hero or anything like that, but because as his brother, I'd commit a selfless act such as that, for him....and that to me is as altruistic as I will get.......but if a situations calls for me to choose: give up my life or my brother will die.........I will narrowly choose to save my own life...............heck...I want to live!! I don't think that's selfish.

so I'm not the most altruistic person, and I wish to improve on this..........a lot of it stems from ego self attachments.....if we can somehow withdraw from worldly lifestyle and pursue a path of hermits or mendicants, and think less of ourselves, then I think naturally this would make you more sensitive to the needs of others and thus make you more altruistic.

egoism I'm not familiar with this term....but skimming really quickly over the wiki links.....I disagree with this concept.

while I do think and agree, to some extent, that our actions are motivated by self-interest, it's all a matter of conditioning.

If you condition yourself to think less of yourself and think more of the community, then I think over time, you can achieve a level of thinking or way of perception of things, at which your actions will be motivated less by your self interest, but more in regard of the interest of the community.....I've already provided an example of how to "condition" yourself to think this way: withdraw from the materialist mentality and pursue a life of a wanderer, sustaining yourself only with minimal needs, i.e. clothes, food, etc.

example, the Buddha lived like this....also, Mahatma Gandhi.....it was reported that after he died, he only had in his possession less than two dollars!

Consequentialism

again, not familiar with the term.....

but I'll take a stab at it...

according to the definition by wiki, it says, more or less, that it is the consequence, or results of your actions, that really counts..........whatever your motives for committing that act in the first place, whether they were moral or not, is irrelevant.

I strongly disagree with this concept.

I think one example will suffice:

hypothetically, suppose I am a pedophile with the intent of committing a sex act with a minor.

however, in the process of committing this act, I somehow managed to help her escape what would have been her death...........suppose her apartment building exploded due to an accident.........had I not brought her to my home that instant, she would have died in her apartment..........according "consequentialism", my pedophillic actions resulted in her escaping her death, which turns out to be good, therefore, my action is "moral" due to the positive results, and my motives are of no value.

I think that the motive for acting, is equally as important, as the outcome of your actions. It all depends on the specific situation.

another example:

Karl Marx - he came up with a theory that aims to help the poor and improve their human condition. I think his intent is moral, and he was well-meaning.

what did Stalin do? he distorted Marx's ideas and in the end, developed Communism that turned out to be in the worse interest of the common people, due to government corruption, etc.............bad results/outcome/consequence...........therefore Marx = immoral, according to consequentialism................I argue that Marx remains moral, because he had no bad intent....it was all the fault of Stalin and all the others who distorted his message.

Utilitarianism

basically: greatest good for the greatest number of people.....again I would have to slightly disagree with this.........although it isn't as extreme as consequentialism.....

I don't think that the "ends justify the means".........and if someone was to follow the principle of utilitarianism, then there is a human tendency to defy ethics just so the outcome will benefit the greater good....

example:

embryonic stem cell research...

while I am an agnostic, I do have a respect for the views and ethics of religious people.

The religious argument is that embryos are considered human beings, and by employing research on an embryo, is synonymous to killing a human being.

The atheist argument is that embryos are just cells, therefore it is ok to use them for research...........

but since this is such a delicate topic, in which, we are dealing with "human lives", I'd have to give the religious side the benefit of the doubt.

even though I'm an agnostic and agree that embryos are "cells", I cannot simply disregard the views of the religious people, especially since in their view, a human being's life is at stake.

it's that simple..

as an agnostic, I would prefer not to have the religious people force religion on me, and likewise, I would prefer not to force agnosticism on the religious people, as well.


utilitarianism is complicated.......I think there is always an element of "sacrifice" involved, in which the person or thing being sacrificed, is rendered "expendable", in order to benefit the many..............and sometimes the "means" in getting to the goal, can be unethical or immoral......as in the above example.

even if you do not have an -ism, tell me what you believe in generally. Democratic world? Or pure monarchy? Or even theocracy.
In theory, I believe in benevolent dictatorship, but the problem with this is that it is susceptible to hereditary rule, which tends to become corrupt; or sometimes relying too much on one person who may or may not be a good leader, can also be dangerous to the interests of the state.

Monarchy can be good, but most of the time it is bad.....and as already mentioned, hereditary rule is usually a bad thing.

theocracy -- it depends what religion we're talking about. If it's some native tribal religion that worships rocks or some kind of primitive religion, then I cannot hold my theocratic rulers to a very high esteem.

theocracy can be good or bad......again, there is an element of elitism and monopoly or rule, that tends to corruption............whenever power and authority is shared by a few in control of the many, this is usually the case............and theocracy (rule of the religious elite) is not an exception.


So in the final analysis, I believe in Democracy, in theory and in practice. Although progress in decision making tends to be slow due to the often bickering of politicians, the most important aspect of democracy is that authority and power is shared between the elected officials, and in which the people themselves, the ordinary citizens, have power, i.e. to vote.

Also, corruption is "checked", because politicians are competing and making sure everyone is playing fairly according to the legal rules of politics.

And last, not even the president, is above the law, under a democracy.


sorry for the long post..
 

Vampire_Fanatic

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i strongly support communism, in that it is the only hope for world peace and racial equality.....it will end homelessness and much corruption...the reason it has never worked before is because all attempts were undermined by capitalist aggression....
 

miyi

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i strongly support communism, in that it is the only hope for world peace and racial equality.....it will end homelessness and much corruption...the reason it has never worked before is because all attempts were undermined by capitalist aggression....
I disagree..

I think the problem with Communism, is that it's utopic.

In theory, I agree with it, and I wish there was a way that it could be implemented fully without corruption.

But in practice -- and this is evident in every case of Communism that has been practiced in history since it's inception -- there is no way to check for corruption; those in power that are implementing Communist policies tend to corrupt.

Lord Acton says, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." This is true with Communism. If only there was a way in which Communism can have a system of "checks and balances", similar with a democracy, and at the same time, carry out their socialist/communist plans, I think it can work.

Some examples of human rights abuses are attributed to Communist regimes, i.e. Joseph Stalin of USSR, Mao Ze Dong of China, Kim Il Sung of North Korea...they've commited perhaps one of the worse kinds of mass genocide in the 20th century.


While the theory of Communism is amazing, those who have practiced it distorted it's intended purpose; it devolves to tyranny, and unless there is a way to fix this, I will not support Communism.

I also disagree that Communism was undermined by Capitalist aggression. I believe both camps were acting aggressively towards each other, but in general, it was more like a stalemate. Both camps were able to contain each other from further expanding, and in the end, the Communist collapse in the USSR is from within, not from without. Gorbachev's economic reforms which failed, and his glasnost programs that essentially aimed at lessening censorship, led to the weakening of the central authority of the regime, and so capitalist aggression from the outside had little to do with it.

And I'm not suggesting democracy is a superior government, either...it has it's flaws, but between Communism and Democracy, I prefer the latter.
 

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no, no, no! Look at Cuba, thnx to Castro's communist reforms, they have free healthcare and a top-notch educational system. In Vietnam did Ho Chi Minh not lead his people to freedom from the overbearing French imperialists, who enslaved them and forced them to work in dangerous conditions for little pay, and create a communist state that does not exist today? And about the genocide, the united states is just as guilty in that area as anyone else, take that instance in the Korean War where U.S. Marines massacred an entire village of innocent people and hid their bodies beneath a bridge!
 

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no, no, no! Look at Cuba, thnx to Castro's communist reforms, they have free healthcare and a top-notch educational system. In Vietnam did Ho Chi Minh not lead his people to freedom from the overbearing French imperialists, who enslaved them and forced them to work in dangerous conditions for little pay, and create a communist state that does not exist today? And about the genocide, the united states is just as guilty in that area as anyone else, take that instance in the Korean War where U.S. Marines massacred an entire village of innocent people and hid their bodies beneath a bridge!
but if communism is so great, why are there so many cubans trying to leave the country for the united states? i've read studies concerning cuban health care and they ration everyone's resources. they don't always provide them with what they need. sure, everyone gets his or her "fair share" but some need more than others.

my parents lived in vietnam during the french occupation and during the war so they know from experience the effect communism has on a country. they fled vietnam because they wanted to live in a democracy not under communist rule because they know what would happen. my grandfather and other members who still remain in vietnam were sent to a reeducation camp and suffered much because of communist rule. their lives are so much better only because vietnam is now a socialist society, not a communist country anymore.

communism may work in theory but it's human nature to do whatever is best for their own survival. the leaders may try to enforce it but in the end, it won't work due to their own greed. it may sound good but when you live it, it's another story.
 
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miyi

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no, no, no! Look at Cuba, thnx to Castro's communist reforms, they have free healthcare and a top-notch educational system. In Vietnam did Ho Chi Minh not lead his people to freedom from the overbearing French imperialists, who enslaved them and forced them to work in dangerous conditions for little pay, and create a communist state that does not exist today? And about the genocide, the united states is just as guilty in that area as anyone else, take that instance in the Korean War where U.S. Marines massacred an entire village of innocent people and hid their bodies beneath a bridge!

Castro killed thousands, and routinely repressed his people, and stifled all kinds of dissent. That can scarcely count as "freedom".

It's true, the U.S.-Cuba embargo is probably counter-productive, and indirectly hurting Cuban civilians as opposed to it's intended target: the regime itself.

and true, the U.S. have committed crimes to humanity before, but more often than not, it's a result of bad judgments from presidents, i.e. Nixon, LBJ.., in times of war.

If we're talking statistics, between Communism and Democracies, the former, by far and by a big margin, are guilty of mass genocide in the 20th century.

no government is perfect, not even democracy. But you have to look at it relatively with each other, compare, and see which system is more corrupt and abusive to its people. You need not debate about it, just look at the facts.
 

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i do look at the facts, and still see communism as the obvious choice, and i do condemn Stalin and Kim-Sung, but there were good leaders such as Lenin
 

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i did dad's report on this a while back, why communism failed. to sum up the points of the conclusion:

-communism enforces equality, which sounds good but not all people want to be equal to everybody else. work really hard but still paid the same.
-no freedom for consumers and suppliers alike since government decides
-progress is inconsistent.

why communism is bad because the focus is on the government and the country, not the people. proven time and again by stalin, mao and castro that when government is too powerful to the people it creates dissonance to the country. in theory its great but when practiced pretty much leans to fail, considering the democratic influence of the post-industrial world
 
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thats just capitalist propaganda, the real truth is covered by their lies....
 

yoniekai

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eh. anyway this all boils down to a matter of opinion. but the fact remains that countries who practiced communism didnt get great results as expected. maybe its the government, maybe its the people. its the same with capitalism and socialism. there have failed attempts at both too. in russia democracy kind of failed, but with putin-esque democracy it improved. what im just stating the previous post were reason why communism failed in those countries that performed it, which may hold true to all practitioners
 
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