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Subject:RE: [socialcredit] What is the actual "gap"? Addendum
Date:Saturday, February 9, 2008  20:52:18 (+0000)
From:John G Rawson <johngrawson @.......com>
In reply to:Message 5252 (written by Wallace Klinck)

Thanks Wally.  I bow to your knowledge and yourcorrection; the "Shorter Oxford" humbles me too!
For what it is worth, and probably of little consequence to the main discussion, wages etc. have also gone up as well as the cost of ice creams. The price may very well be similar, in terms of adulterated currency.  When ice creams were 6d (5c) I was getting ú325 ($NZ650) p.a. with a bachelor's degree.
I agree entirely about the importance of the basic philosophy. While our Party may not have adopted every detail of Douglas dicta, I think I can claim that every bit of its wide-ranging and comprehensive (too much so) policy is firmly based on his basic philosophy.
A National Credit Authority would have to assess the incipient "gap" at the particular time it was dealing with.  Are you saying that the situation is so complex that we can not even guess reasonably at its extent without the extra information they would demand?  If so, I agree, to a very considerable extent.
However, people are not generaly interested in philosophy.  I will go further; it is the duty of any reasoning adult at the lower levels of income to ask "What's in it for me/us/our family?"
So if we are propagating our ideas on a practical scale, whether by party oprganisation or appeal to "people power", how do we go about it? Do we make a wild guess, somewhere between Bill's 3% and someone elses 75% or more, and risk promising the moon?  Do we just explain the defects of the present system and lead people to believe that we can obviously affect an improvement, and after gaining power proceed cautiously by trial and error? (The second is my choice, but obviously there are many intermediate approaches.)
This is what I mean about practical politics.  A questioner wants, no deserves, a brief answer, albeit with an offer of fuller backup, but not to be referred to fifteen pages of wordy discussion.
Regards.  John R.



Date: Fri, 8 Feb 2008 17:42:31 -0700
From: wmklinck@shaw.ca
To: socialcredit@elistas.com
Subject: Re: [socialcredit] What is the actual "gap"? Addendum

Douglas described an inherent flaw in cost accountancy.  He mentioned certain figures and indicated that they were exemplary--not precise, and not intended to be so.  The deficiency of effective purchasing-power is not a static value--but variable and dynamic.  It would realistically be expected to increase over time, however, with the progressive displacement of labor in favor of non-human factors of production.  The calculation of such values are a task properly assigned to technicians or people qualified in the field of statistics.  I note in these exchanges that no differentiation seems to be made between the accumulated deficiency over successive, historical accountancy periods and the deficiencies extant in each individual accountancy cycle.  Obviously, from a historical perspective prices are far to high because of the incremental increases in each cycle over time.  It seems strange that some people find this to be an extravagant claim--yet seem to accept as entirely normal that an ice-cream cone fifty years ago might have sold for five cents whereas today it might cost three dollars.  Things are not necessarily normal just because we view them as they present themselves daily.  Obviously, enormous costs exist under the present rules of financial accountancy because of the tremendous expenditure of effort and materials on superfluous goods and services produced merely to make it possible to claim past production.  Such production is simply so much waste and represents a diminution of the real standard of living.  Incidentally, I might point out that the correct spelling below is "religion", not "religeon."  If anyone can with the use of reason upstage or supersede Douglas, an empirical engineer who dealt extensively with realities, that will be just fine--but they should be required to demonstrate that they have read and understood his position prior to making any such claims.  A well-read student of Douglas would know that he placed metaphysics or philosophy at the top of the social order with policy flowing from that philosophy--and certainly never made claims to be a "prophet."  No society can survive and flourish without some system of values which influence the behavior of it individual citizens.  Mankind cannot live in a moral,  ethical or spiritual vacuum, which all to often, unfortunately, seems to be the domain of "practical politics."
Sincerely
Wally


On 8-Feb-08, at 1:23 PM, John G Rawson wrote:

Fair enough, Joe.  I think the problem is that I'm trying to make Social Credit something clear-cut and reasonable whereas some others are making it a religeon based on "the word of the prophet". You get that way when you go into practical politics instead of pure academic discussions.
Planned obsolescence is a symptom of the deficiency of purchasing power, in that the manufacturers are trying to force buying power their way more regularly at the expense of other products.
Regards.   John R.



Date: Fri, 8 Feb 2008 08:07:10 -0500
From: thomsonhiyu@shaw.ca
To: socialcredit@elistas.com
Subject: Re: [socialcredit] What is the actual "gap"? Addendum

Hi John,
 
You wrote:- "If the five to one ratio is accepted, we must also acept that four fifths of goods either remain unsold or are sold by mortgaging future earnings."
 
I may be wrong, but I think that Douglas might not have been talking specifically about such a huge 'discount' rate in actuality.   But rather trying to make the point that there is presently far too much 'waste' and 'sabotage' that are now included in final prices that the Consumer is being forced to pay.  He lists many of these things in several of the early books. 
 
They would encompass everything from 'planned obsolescence', to tradesmen and workers 'stretching the job out'  longer than it really should take, to all the 'marketing ploys' of modern advertising.  Like putting a small product in an oversized box, for instance.  And a whole host of other similar things.  All of these add to the cost and the price of the product without really adding anything useful to the overall wealth of the world. 
 
Included in that would be some of what Bill Ryan's told us previously about the pre-mature scrapping of still perfectly good industrial plant, and its subsequent replacement, largely  because of the differing way accounting treats 'operating' and 'capital' costs in determining profit. 
 
I think it was to the overall extent of these things on which Douglas was making "tedious investigations".  Not the establishment of the figures for a National 'capital account', since he tells us elsewhere such figures already largely exist.  And it hardly seems likely there would be too much 'tedium' needed to gather them together. 
 
Many of the current incentives to this type of 'waste' and  'sabotage' might disappear under a Social Credit system, since we would then not have to continuously 'make work' in the manner we presently do in order to try to get sufficient 'effective demand' to fully pay for what we've already done.  And if many of these 'costs' could be  removed from prices, they may indeed be a fraction of what they currently are.
 
I think we have to remember, too, the times in which Douglas was writing this.  Advertising in those days was a relatively new development in the science of "marketing" sense.  So was the development of the 'mass-produced' product, which often didn't approximate the previous 'quality' of long-lasting craftsmanship.  And Douglas's ideas themselves were in competition with Marxism as a proposed solution to post WW I's  'economic'  problems. 
 
Regards,
 
Joe
 
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